THE LIBRARY OF THE UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA ENDOWED BY THE DIALECTIC AND PHILANTHROPIC SOCIETIES GIT 5 .0 53 UNIVERSITY OF N.C. AT CHAPEL HILL 10001660506 This book is due at the LOUIS R. WILSON LIBRARY on the last date stamped under "Date Due." If not on hold it may be renewed by bringing it to the Hbrary. DATE pi^T^ DUE DATE DDE MAR 5 76 FEBli ^1995 Digitized by the Internet Arcliive in 2013 littp://arcliive.org/details/oldnavigators1755unse THE OLD NAVIGATORS NOW READY IN THIS SERIES NINETEENTH CENTURY EXPLORERS THE OLD EXPLORERS THE OLD NAVIGATORS MODERN TRAVELLERS PATHFINDERS OF TO-DAY TRADING COMPANIES Manufactured in Great Britain PREFACE The works to which these remarks are prefatory were first issued by the PubHshers a good many years ago ; and although the lapse of time Vv^hich has occurred since their first publication might not seem much if it were credited to the eighteenth century, it is a long period in the extension of twentieth century knowledge and in the broadening of the modern outlook. The volumes therefore have received a very considerable overhauling. Most of the biographical essays have been completely re-written, and some that would be altogether new to the readers have been inserted. The work has been carried out under my editorship, and in the main I am responsible for the opinions that have been expressed ; or if in all cases I do not im- plicitly concur, I respect the other authors' opinions. But in most cases I hold opinions as herein expressed, hold them even emphatically, and consider them to be in accord with the latest extent of our knov/ledge on the subject. The little books which are preceded by this Preface do not go back very far — scarcely more than a minute of time — in human history — not even very far in the history which has been reckoned by the writing down of records, though the term " history nowadays is scarcely limited to this method of dating and divining the progress of the human race. Within the last twenty-five years, our knowledge as to the history of our species on the earth has extended enormously. Where it passes beyond Man's own record of himself 6 PREFACE it is achieved indirectly by the story we can put to- gether from his remains, his implements and artefacts, his pottery and his buildings, as well as his bony vestiges. From a survey of the world we realise that the last of the great invasions of Europe by races of man- kind coming from Africa and Asia, and differing much or little from the previous European types by racial characteristics, skin colour, civilisation and religion,, ceased with the invasion of eastern Europe by the Turks and Tartars in the middle of the fifteenth century. And simultaneously, or quite a few years afterwards, the emxigration in research and discovery of the Europeans to Asia, Africa, and America began. It is at this time that the outlook of these books com- mences. It opens with the remarkable work of Prince Henry of Portugal in 1420, soon followed by the really amazing invasion of West Africa by Ca da Mosto, the Venetian captain-adventurer. It narrates the voyages of other Italian explorers, Genoese or Venetians in nationality. It ranges forward through the time of Shakespeare to the age of Captain Cook, to the great journeys of the middle and of the close of the nineteenth century, to the period, in fact, of my own lifetime ; for although not a very old man, I have met and have known personally, been trained and influenced by some of the giants of nineteenth century exploration. It makes me feel curiously ancient to recall the eagerness with which, in the opening years of the eighth decade of the last century, I encountered men like Stanley, Burton, Grant, Thomson, Schweinfurth, and Kirk, and discussed with them the mysteries of Africa, the geographical discoveries to be made, the PREFACE 7 natural history problems to be solved ; and to re- member that these discussions, more often than not, 'took place in Africa, prior to plunges into the unknown to solve these secrets so obstinately withheld from solution. At the close of the nineteenth century most of the puzzles had been solved, and the explanatory facts had been made known. The whole world, barring a patch here and there among the Arctic and Antarctic snows and icy mountains, in the South American and middle African forests, or on the Central Asiatic table- lands, had been mapped and examined ; all the details of the fauna and flora of the tropics had been displayed to our investigation. And the means of travel had been enormously increased. Motors and aeroplanes, ice-breaking steamers, railways and electric launches, had permitted scientifically-trained observers to pene- trate almost anywhere on the earth's surface. Now, then, has the time arrived to turn round and reflect on the story of the great European discoverers of the past five hundred years. H. H. Johnston. CONTENTS. I. SIR JOHN HAWKINS .... II. SIR WALTER RALEIGH III. RENE ROBERT CAVELIER, SIEUR DE LA SALLE . . IV. WILLIAM DAMPIER . . V. CAPTAIN VITUS BERING VI. CAPTAIN COOK . . . . VII. FRANCOIS DE GALAUP DE LA PEROUSE VIII. CAPTAIN GEORGE VANCOUVER L — Sir John Hawkins. CHAPTER I. THE FIRST VOYAGE, Those who lived in the sixteenth century lived in a stirring time. The steady progress of discovery, v/hich had begun with Prince Henry the Navigator, continued. The care with which he had trained seamen for the purpose of venturing over unknown seas, into lands of whose inhabitants, laws, customs, and character they were ignorant, had been well repaid. Portugal had become the leading trading nation of Europe. Her ships travelled the only known sea - route to India, and her soldiers guarded that route from interference on the part of other nations. When Spain managed to get control over Portugal at the close of the sixteenth century, the smaller of the two nations lost her importance, and Spain, rich with the gold and silver of the New World, added to her treasury by the seizure of her neighbour's v/ealth. But though, partly through the foresight of Queen Isabella, Spain lo SIR JOHN HAWKINS. had gained the New World, the other nations of Europe were not content to let her have all the benefit of the trade arising from the posses- sion of America. They thought they had a right to as much of the commerce as they tould obtain. As a result, expeditions were sent out with much /egularity to the Spanish possessions, particu- larly by English merchants and adventurers. This did not suit Spain, and gradually a state of warfare was established between the Spaniards, on the one hand, and all other powers engaged in the trade, on the other. The attempt to obtain a share of the trade in spices, silks, and so forth, for which India was famous, led to many endeavours to reach that eastern land by western, north-western, and north-eastern passages. India was not the only country claiming attention. The Spanish possessions in the New World were becoming better known ; but there were other districts to be discovered and settled, other huge tracts of country to be made a base for trading purposes. In the reign of Queen Elizabeth alone, many voyages of discovery were undertaken. Frobisher explored the coast of Greenland, Gilbert obtained a charter to colonise the Bahamas, and made an attempt to settle Newfoundland, SIR JOHN HAWKINS. ii while Raleigh endeavoured to plant a settle- ment in Virginia. Expeditions sent out from England visited Goa. and ravaged Jamaica ; made their way to Senegambia, and discovered new lands even near districts where the Spaniards had been settled for a long time. The French were driven from Newfoundland, an English expedition reached India by the overland route, the East India Company was established in 1600, and a factory erected at Bantam in 1602. This is surely not a bad record for one reign. It will be perfectly clear that deeds of the kind just mentioned could not be performed without brave men as leaders. And what age prior to the nineteenth century can boast of so many as the age of Elizabeth ? Such names as Frobisher, Drake, Hawkins, the Gilberts, Raleigh, Grenville, and Howard, leap unbidden to the mind. Many of the bravest sailors of that time carried on what would, at the present day, be called piracy ; but the piracy was justified. Had they not armed their vessels, they and all the goods they carried would have fallen a speedy prey to those who grumbled most about the iniquity of the sailors they would have been glad to destroy. Among the most daring of these sea-dogs SIR JOHN HAWKINS. was John Hawkins, whose father before him had followed the sea. Of many of his deeds we are proud even now, three hundred years and more since they were done. Of one of his actions we feel heartily ashamed, though Hawkins himself was not in the least prepared to admit that he had done wrong. It was he who began the English trade in slaves. He had made several voyages to the Canary Islands, and obtained information about the West Indies. In these islands much severe labour was involved in raising the various crops, such as sugar, and the Spaniards, who held the islands, were far too indolent by nature to dream of doing the labour themselves. The natives employed were not strong enough, and, though the Spaniards were not tender- hearted about the troubles of the islanders, it was not convenient to have a man die on their hands just when he might have been of the greatest use. It was thought that if stronger men could be procured, it would be much better, and, by degrees, there rose the idea of importing Negroes into the country. This was part of the information received by Hawkins about the West Indies, and he resolved that if Negroes were wanted, and would fetch sufficient money to cover the expense of obtaining them and SIR JOHN HAWKINS. 13 carrying them across the Atlantic, and yield a fair profit, then Negroes he would obtain by every means in his power. Upon making inquiries, he learned that a good profit could be made, and that the black men could be obtained easily enough on the coast of Guinea. This was sufficient, and he began to make preparations for a voyage to the African coast, thus becoming the founder of the slave-trade in Negroes, so far as England is concerned. It has been said that Hawkins thought he was doing no wrong in engaging in this trade, and he was not alone in his belief, for, when he was knighted, his coat of arms bore the picture of a globe with a Negro's head chained to it — this device meeting with the approval of the queen. Three ships were put into commission for his voyage, and, lest he should be short-handed through sickness, he placed the best men he could find on board the ships. Not more than a hundred were chosen, as he knew that the more men he had the greater was the risk of sickness. Leaving England early in October 1562, he went to Sierra Leone, after touching at Tenerife, where the people were most kind to him and his crews. 14 SIR JOHN HAWKINS. At Sierra Leone the hunt after Negroes began, and Hawkins tells in the coolest manner possible that they seized over three hundred of the poor black men, by rushing their villages, or by buying them from chiefs. With this cargo on board, he sailed for Hispaniola, or, as it is now called, San Domingo, where he sold the Negroes, some for money, but others for goods of one kind and another, such as hides, ginger, sugar, spices, and pearls. The goods received were sufficient to fill not only his own three ships but other vessels besides. Having sold all his slaves, he sailed round the north of San Domingo, and reached England in the month of September, 1563. CHAPTER 11. THE SECOND VOYAGE. About a year after his return from this slaving expedition, Hawkins started on another voyage, intending this time to go to the Indies. The ship he commanded was called the Jesus, Leaving Plymouth on the i8th of October, he set his course for Tenerife, v/here he arrived in less than a month. SIR JOHN HAWKINS. He did not remain there, however, as all he wanted was fresh water and some provisions, and, having obtained these, he sailed in the middle of November for the African coast. Being unable to enter the River Jeba, he went to a neighbouring island, where he found roots of various kinds, rice, palms, dates, and goats. The natives were strong-looking men, who filed their teeth and tattooed their bodies. For travelling by water they used dug-out canoes, that is, canoes made from the trunk of a tree, by digging or burning out as much of the wood as was not required. These canoes could hold twenty or thirty men. Their houses were built in orderly fashion in streets. They were round in shape, like dove- cots, and stakes interwoven with palm leaves took the place of walls. The roofs were thatched with palm leaves or reeds. Inside, the houses were divided into two parts by palm leaf matting, one part being used as a kitchen, and the other as a sleeping-place. The beds were ranged along the floor close to the walls in the sleeping-place, and queer beds they were ! A number of long sticks were placed side by side on supports, the bed being about a foot above the ground, and on these staves a mat was laid, another being put over the sleeper if necessary. i6 SIR JOHN HAWKINS. In the middle of the town stood the Council House, which served for various purposes. Here the question of peace or war was settled, and the time for beginning the palm-wine harvest arranged, while it also served as a court of justice. The method of obtaining wine from the palm trees was curious. The top of the palm being cut, the sap which dropped out was caught in a gourd. This, being kept for some time, fer- mented, and was then ready for use. Hawkins must have been very observant ; he noticed lizards like newts in appearance, but much larger, and coloured black and blue. He noticed, besides, that the arrows used by the warriors were poisoned. The men had a peculiar way of fight- ing. A certain number of them, called target men, went with the army, and their business was to hold a huge target in front of three or four warriors, who shot off their arrows from behind the shelter thus formed. The English seaman tried to find out if the people had any religion, but, so far as he could learn, they had none. Goods were not held in common among them ; but anything that grew without having been set by the hand of man was regarded as common property. Hawkins remained among these people till 2ist December, and then sailed for Sierra Leone, While here, he made an attempt to capture some 'Vo?n an Original Oil Painting in the possession of Miss Mary W S. Hawkins, ax Hayf ir Hall, Buckjastleigh, Devon. Sir John Hawkins. SIR JOHiN HAWKINS. i? of the black men, but completely failed, and he himself escaped only with great difficulty. It is a strange comment on the character of the adventurers that, while engaged in the work of tearing men from their native land to sell as slaves, they yet held a strong belief in God's protecting care over them. Of his escape Hawkins says, God, who worketh all things for the best, would not have it so, and by Him we escaped without danger, His name be praised for it.'* Leaving Sierra Leone on the 29th of December, he ran into a violent storm, and, shaping his course for the West Indies, arrived there at the beginning of March. The island at which he made a stay to obtain fresh water was called by him the Island of Cannibals. The natives were the boldest in the West Indies, and had never been conquered by the Spaniards. Continuing his voyage, he reached the Testigos Islands, where he was not allowed to trade. Word was sent of his arrival to San Domingo, and he left on the 20th of March. At Santa Fe, the natives presented him with bread, maize, fowls, and potatoes. This must be almost the first mention of potatoes in an English book, as the root was so little known that Hawkins took the trouble to describe it. In addition to these provisions, the people O.N. B i8 SIR JOHN HAWKINS. gave the sailors pine-apples, and the seamen, in return, presented the natives with beads, glasses, knives, pewter whistles, and various other articles of the same kind. These Indians (as Hawkins calls them, though they are now styled Amerindians, so as not to be confused with the people of India), were of a tawny colour. Their hair was black and straight, and both men and w^omen went about almost naked. Like so many wild people they used poisoned arrows. " Their poison is of such force, wrote Hawkins, ''that a man, being stricken therewith, dieth within four-and-twenty hours, as the Spaniards do affirm ; and, in my judgment, it is like there can be no stronger poison, as they make it by using apples which are very fair and red in colour, but are a strong poison ; with the which, together with venomous bats, vipers, and other serpents, they make a medley, and therewith anoint their arrov/s.'' Leaving this island on the 28th, he ran for the coast of Venezuela, where he sold some of the Negroes he had on board. By the beginning of May he was at the island of Cura^oa, where he took on board a large number of hides. Cattle and sheep were so plentiful in this island that the seamen obtained the flesh for nothing, the hide, with the exception of the SIR JOHN HAWKINS. 19 tongue, being the only really valuable part of the animal. Coming next to Rio de la Hacha, he found the Spaniards there a very unkindly people, but after a time managed to do some trade with them. The appearance of crocodiles and caimans in the river attracted much of Hawkins' attention. He also learned something about their habits, but much of what he heard was untrue. They lived in and out of the w^ater, and were so fierce and greedy that they spared neither man nor fish. One of his Negroes was caught and killed by a crocodile, and in telling the story Hawkins adds what is, no doubt, amusing to us of to-day, but was certainly believed by the men of his time. The nature of the crocodile, he says, ** is always, when he would have his prey, to cry and sob like a Christian body, to provoke them to come to him, and then he snatcheth at them." At the end of the month the adventurer left Rio de la Hacha, and, setting his course for Hispaniola, went past Jamaica and Cuba and on to the Florida coast. In the Isles of Tortugas the seamen had birds for food, and, having come upon some turtles, killed them and cooked the flesh. The taste, they said, was something like that of veal, but 20 SIR JOHN HAWKINS. the turtles* eggs they did not care for nearly so much. The French were supposed to have settlements somewhere on the Florida coast, and Hawkins ranged up and down trying to find them, but his quest proved fruitless. The English sailors seem to have spent a glorious time while in these seas. For food they had the flesh of the deer, and several kinds of hare; they had maize and millet to make other dishes, and beautiful grapes were to be obtained merely for the trouble of plucking them. Tobacco also grew there, but the explorers had not yet learned its use. The country produced, in addition to these animals and fruits, fine forests of pines and cypress ; miyrrh and certain kinds of gums were common, while gold and pearls were also dis- covered. Within the woods lurked foxes, pumas, and pole-cats ; alligators or crocodiles were plentiful in the rivers ; many adders, which the French were said to use as food, were found, and strange flying fish were often seen to rise from the sea. The natives lived in strong houses thatched with palm leaves, each house being constructed to hold about a hundred people. Fires were kept burning night and day in them, though all cooking was done out-of-doors, the houses being SIR JOHN HAWKINS. 21 used only as sleeping-rooms. Fire was obtained by rubbing two sticks together. The men among the natives dressed in deer- skins, painted yellow and red, black and russet, or any other colour for which the owner had a fancy. Their bodies were tattooed, a thorn being used as a needle. They painted their bodies too, a light colour being put on when they were going to war. Their arrows, which seem to have been poisoned, were made of reeds tipped with snakes' teeth, fish bones, flint-stones, or knife-points. The women wore painted skins, though many had gowns made of moss so knit together as to form a kind of cloth. These dresses were worn like a surplice, and the women's long black hair was allowed to hang down their back over the dress. Shortly before he left Florida, Hawkins found the French settlf^rs, and glad they v^^ere to see him, as they were in sad want of food. After relieving them, the English captain sailed for England, arriving at Padstow, in Cornwall, in the month of September. SIR JOHN HAWKINS. CHAPTER HI. THE THIRD VOYAGE. Hawkins had not been home long before he determined upon a third voyage, and towards the end of the following year he set sail from Plymouth. In his previous voyages, though making much profit, he had undergone great sufferings ; but, compared with what happened on the voyage he was now undertaking, all that had gone before sank into a mere nothing. He himself calls it the unfortunate voyage." While sailing about forty leagues off Cape Finisterre a fearful storm arose, the fleet was scattered, and the Jesus^ in w^hich Hawkins was, seemed on the point of sinking. So great was the fear lest the vessel should founder, that, resolving to abandon the voyage, he set his course for England. However, just as he changed his direction, the storm abated, and the voyage was resumed. On reaching the Canary Islands, he was delighted to find that all his ships had arrived there. Having obtained water and provisions, the expedition sailed for the Guinea Coast, where, SIR JOHN HAWKINS. 23 as before, the sailors hunted for Negroes. Of these unfortunate men a few were obtained in the Cape Verde Islands, but it was at considerable cost of life. The natives used poisoned arrows, which had a most peculiar effect on those who were wounded by them. Occasionally a large wound would heal quickly and the patient feel no ill effects. On the other hand, a small wound often caused death, even after the wound itself had closed. The poison seems to have produced a kind of lock-jaw, as the sufferers died with their mouths shut, being unable in some cases to open them for nine or ten days before death. Cruising down the Guinea Coast, and making frequent excursions ashore, Hawkins collected about a hundred and fifty slaves ; but the climate told heavily on his crew, many of whom were sick of fever. On one occasion, when they went ashore, an arrangement was made to take part in a native quarrel. One of the chiefs promised that, if the English would help him against his enemy, he would give them all the prisoners that might be captured. This was good news to Hawkins, who at once agreed to give his aid. A battle was fought, in which the Negroes and English were victorious. The English took two hundred 24 SIR JOHN HAWKINS. and fifty prisoners, and the chief for whom they fought captured over six hundred. During the night, however, he stole from the camp, carrying the prisoners with him, and Hawkins was thus left with the unhicky blacks whom the English themselves had taken, Hawkins had now between four and five hundred Negroes, and these being as many as he could well manage, he left the Guinea Coast and steered for Dominica, in the West Indies, where he expected to sell his human goods. Coasting from place to place in the Indies, he found that the Spaniards were most unwilling to carry on any trade with him ; and at Rio de la Hacha, where the pearls come from/* he met with a serious disaster. The Spaniards here were willing enough to take the Negroes, but were just as unwilling to pay for them. The governor of the town, pre- tending he wished to trade, tried to persuade Hawkins to land his slaves, but the wily English captain was quite as cunning as the governor, and refused to put them ashore with- out security. Tired of waiting about, he determined to attack the town, and force the inhabitants to buy his slaves. This attack was successful, and, as a result, a system of barter was set up by which SIR JOHN HAWKINS. 25 Negroes to the number of two hundred were exchanged for goods of the same kind as those obtained on a previous voyage. Through fear of what might happen to them afterwards, the Spaniards carried on this trade secretly. Leaving Rio de la Hacha, Hawkins proceeded to Cartagena, and here, again, was unsuccessful in opening up trade with the inhabitants. As it was useless to wait, he left Cartagena and ran from Cuba towards Florida. On the way the ships were badly knocked about by a storm, which raged for four days. The Jesus sprang a leak, her upper parts had to be cut away, and her rudder was so severely damaged that it was difficult to steer her. With his vessel almost a wreck, Hawkins ran before the gale in the direction of Florida, where he hoped to find a haven in which to repair his ship and rest his men. But, to his disappoint- ment, no sign of a haven appeared, and the storm, breaking out afresh, battered and tossed the ships till they were barely able to keep afloat. Under these circumstances, he was glad to obtain shelter in the harbour of San Juan de UUoa. On his way there, he captured a trading vessel with passengers on board, and when he came near the harbour, the Spaniards, thinking all the ships were of their ov/n nation, allowed them to enter. 26 SIR JOHN HAWKINS. Hawkins at once set the traders free, and obtained food from the inhabitants of the town. But it was now the season of the year at which the Spanish fleet might be expected to arrive, and this made Hawkins rather uneasy. If he allowed the fleet to come in, he would run serious risk of being taken prisoner and of having his ships destroyed. If he kept the fleet out, it would probably be wrecked, and goods, plate, and spices to the value of ;^2, 000,000 would be lost. If this happened, the Spaniards would complain to Queen Elizabeth, and, rather than suffer her displeasure, he determined to allow the fleet to enter, and risk the con- sequences. When the Spaniards did, at length, arrive and anchor in the harbour, what Hawkins had foreseen came to pass. The newcomers be- haved badly to the English, many of whom were slain by an act of treachery while they were on shore. An attack was then made on the English ships, but they managed to hold their own, and even to sink some of the Spanish vessels. When fire- ships were sent down upon them, however, the case was altered. There was nothing left for Hawkins and his comrades but to cut their cables and run. The MinioTij accompanied by a small ship the SIR JOHN HAWKINS. Judith^ got clear of the harbour, Hawkins being on board the Minion. The Jesus^ with the men on board of her, was left to the tender mercies of the Spaniards. During the night the Judith disappeared, and was never more seen. The Minion^ tossed about by the wild waters, was in a pitiful condition. For fourteen days the little vessel was wander- ing over the ocean, the English captain not daring to land, and hardly knowing where he could do so if he wished it. At length hunger drove the men to ask if he would put them ashore. Thereupon, Hawkins divided his company into those who wished to go ashore and those who would remain by him. Three hundred sailors, tired of the struggle for food — they were glad to eat dogs, cats, rats, mice, parrots, and monkeys — asked to be allowed to settle in some favourable spot. They were landed on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, and afterwards suffered terribly at the hands of the Spaniards. The repairing of the Minion was hindered by a storm, but at length she got clear of the Gulf, and, sailing through the Strait of Florida, reached a temperate climate. The change was too great for the sailors in their weak condition, and they died off rapidly, while those who survived were barely able to move about. 28 SIR JOHN HAWKINS, Hawkins, therefore, resolved to risk a visit to a Spanish port on his way home, so that his men might get rest, and obtain fresh food. They put in at Ponte Vedra, near Vigo, where fiesh meat was procured, but the supply came too late for the unlucky sailors, many of whom died shortly afterwards. Seeing their weakness, the Spaniards tried to take them prisoners, but, escaping narrowly, they sailed to Vigo, and thence to England, on January 20th, 1568, arriving five days later at Mount*s Bay in Cornwall. Of this terrible voyage Hawkins wrote, ^*If all the miseries and troublesome affairs of this sorrowful voyage should be perfectly and thoroughly written, there would need a pain- ful (painstaking) man with his pen, and as great a time as he had that wrote the lives ot the martyrs." It is interesting to note that the captain of one vessel in this unlucky fleet was Francis Drake, who never forgave the Spaniards for the treachery they displayed at San Juan de UUoa. Some years after this expedition Sir John Hawkins was placed in charge of the navy, and it was largely owing to him that the royal ships were in such good condition when they were called upon to meet the Armada of Spain. The grim old warrior played a worthy part in SIR JOHN HAWKINS. 29 the battle, and died, respected by the whole nation, in 1595. Hawkins did not make so many or such famous discoveries as some other seamen have done ; but his daring voyages, his influence on trade, his fostering of the navy, and his place as a captain of the English fleet that fought the power of Spain, render him worthy of a high place on the roll of brave navigators. IL— Sir Walter Raleigh. CHAPTER L Raleigh's early life. In Europe, and especially in England, the six- teenth century was an important period. The spirit of unrest which marked the previous hundred years still continued. The country was passing through a series of religious struggles, while the discoveries of Columbus and Cabot had left upon men's minds an impression the importance of which it is hardly possible to overstate. A New World was opened to men just at the time when they were learning to think and act for themselves, instead of depending upon others. The hope of trade, the desire for wealth, and the love of adventure, all combined to cause the more daring seamen to sail away to the West. In addition to these forces, there must be taken into account the existence in England, during the latter part of the century, of strong patriotism and deep-rooted hatred to Spain. It was during these stirring times, in 1552, that Walter Raleigh was born at Hayes, in SIR WALTER RALEIGH. Devonshire. The family had lived for many generations in that county, and had for some time been among the richest landholders there ; but Raleigh's father and grandfather had both been forced to sell part of their estates, so that in his time the family wealth was by no means so considerable as it had been. Of the boy's early education we possess little knowledge. At the time of the Reformation the religious houses had been closed, and education taken out of the hands of the church ; but, to supply the want thus brought about, grammar schools were established by both Edward VL and Queen Elizabeth. As Raleigh's name does not appear on the roll of any of these schools, we are led to believe that he was educated at home, and, from the opinion held of him at Oxford university, to which he was sent, and from the learning shown in his writings, it is plain that his tutors were men of ability, and that they had a willing pupil. At Oxford, Raleigh gained a name as a student of oratory and philosophy, but he did not stay long enough at the university to take his degree. At that time, to be a soldier was one of the surest ways to gain honour and distinction, and Raleigh, seizing the chance offered him, joined a relative of his own, Henry Champernoun, in 32 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. an expedition to France to fight on the side of the Huguenots. For five years he remained there, and then returned to England, where he studied for a short period. These five years of adventure did much for Raleigh ; he had seen something of life, he had come into contact with more than one famous man, and he had gained a useful knowledge ot foreign affairs, whicn otherwise he could hardly have obtained. The short period of quiet which he enjoyed upon his return to England must have been pleasant to him after the busy, active life he had led as a soldier. During this time he read, studied, and wrote poetry. In his reading he eagerly seized upon everything which could give him any informa- tion about the New World. The discoveries of Columbus and Cabot, the adventures of Cortez, and the conquests of Pizarro, he had read of when a lad, and now the golden lands of the West, painted by Spanish writers, were ever present to his mind. Mingled with visions of these rich lands, there may have come into his head the thought that England might one day hold a place in this wonderful New World, and vague ideas of planting colonies in the West may, even then, have been passing through his mind. But he was not to enjoy the pleasures of / From the Painting by Zucchero, hy permission oj Sir 77. Lennard, Bart. ^•N- Sir Walter Raleigh and Son. SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 33 quiet reading for long. The Netherlands were fighting for their liberty against Philip IL of Spain, and Raleigh, feeling that he might aid them in their struggle, and gain honour for himself, joined an expedition under Sir John Norris, and took part in the fighting against the Spanish forces. On his return to England he was soon given fresh work. A rebellion having broken out in Ireland he was sent, with the rank of captain, to help in putting it down. This was the promotion he had been seeking, for he was now engaged in the queen's service. Another step forward was taken when he was made Governor of Cork. To Raleigh, one of the most pleasant incidents of his stay in Ireland was the beginning of his friendship w^ith the poet Spenser, whom he met there — a friendship that was never broken. Coming to Court, he soon became a favourite of the queen. Honours were showered upon him, he was knighted and made a Member of Parliament for his native county, the manor of Sherbourne in Dorsetshire was granted to him, and he began to make a name for himself in Parliament as an orator, just as he had done previously at the University. The queen had given him more than one mark of her personal favour, had placed, with O.N. C 34 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. her own hands, a gold chain about his neck, and had praised his wit and ability to all hei Court. But, amid all these triumphs and successes, there was still passing through Raleigh's mind the idea that America should be settled, if only in part, by English people, and before long he found an ally to aid him in putting his idea ' into practice, CHAPTER IL THE VOYAGE OF 1 583. Sir Walter Raleigh had three half-brothers (his mother had been twice married), the famous knights Sir John, Sir Humphrey, and Sir Adrian Gilbert. The second of these men was as eager as Raleigh to plant colonies in America. Per- haps Raleigh even obtained some of his ideas on the matter from Sir Humphrey, whose writings had already proved one of the causes which led Martin Frobisher to undertake the search for the North- West Passage. There was a marked difference between the discoveries of the Spanish and Portuguese, and those of the English sailors. The vessels belonging to the first two countries were large when compared with those of England, and the SIR WALTER RALEIGH. voyages made in them were to southern lands, where good weather was the rule, though, of course, severe storms raged now and again. The English ships were tiny craft, and were steered to the North, where the weather was generally rough. Instead of the English sailors making their way to a land of bright sunshine, where gay-feathered birds had their homes, and where butterflies, like living jewels, flashed about, they sailed to the grim shores of the Northern Seas, where the sun's face was often hidden behind banks of heavy clouds, and where few green forests gave relief to the bleakness of the land. Many English seamen joined in the work of discovery, not from any hope of gain to them- selves, but from love of fame, and from the sheer joy of overcoming difficulties : that, indeed, was the character of the time. The age of Elizabeth was a glorious one. The queen had the gift of inspiring the nation with loyalty to herself ; the patriotism of the country was very real and earnest, and England was therefore stronger than ever before. Among the brave men who lived in this reign. Sir Humphrey Gilbert holds an honour- able position, and with him Raleigh joined, at 36 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. the age of twenty-seven, in an attempt to plant a colony in the New World. A patent had been granted to Sir Humphrey in 1578, allow- ing him to go on a voyage of discovery to the West, and to take possession of any lands not yet settled by Christian kings or their subjects. The first voyage in 1579 was far from successful. The daring deeds of Drake had made Philip II. suspicious, and a sharp look- out was kept for the English ships. One vessel was lost in a fight with the Spaniards, and Raleigh himself only managed to hold his own in another action, his vessel being badly damaged. In spite of this he held on his way ; but, his supplies running short, he was forced to return home. This want of success, however, made Gilbert and Raleigh the more determined to fit out a second expedition which should not disappoint their hopes. Accordingly, in 1583, a fleet of five ships, ranging from ten tons to two hundred tons burden, and carrying about two hundred and sixty men, among them being masons, smiths, carpenters, and shipwrights, set out for New- foundland, which was reached on 30th July. Towards the expenses of the expedition Raleigh gave ;^2000, and provided a ship — the famous Ark Raleigh. To amuse the crew, and to get upon good SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 37 terms with the savages, the ships were pro- vided ^* with music in good variety, not omitting the least toys, as morrice dancers, hobby horses, and May-like conceits, to delight the savage people, whom they intended to win by all fair means possible." On arriving at Newfoundland, Sir Humphrey found that the Portuguese and the French had already discovered the value of the fishing grounds on the Great Banks, where they often employed as many as a hundred vessels during the season. Entering St. John's Bay, possession was taken, in the queen's name, of the country for two hundred leagues in every direction from the landing-place. The land was divided among the settlers, and then Sir Hum- phrey Gilbert turned his attention to the search for gold. Having thus established the colony, Gilbert set sail in the Squirrel^ a tiny vessel of ten tons, and, taking with him two other ships, went southward on a voyage of discovery. One of these, the Delight^ was wrecked among the shoals near Sable Island, and of a hundred men on board only twelve escaped. Among those who perished was the man who under- stood best where to look for gold. This was a sad grief to Sir Humphrey ; he was eager 38 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. to return home rich and famous, and had depended almost wholly upon the help of this person in his search for the precious metals. Filled with disappointment, he determined to return to England. As the little ten-ton Squirrel was not considered safe, he was asked not to go in her, but to sail instead in the Golden Hinde. Sir Humphrey refused, saying that he w^ould not forsake his company with whom he had passed through so many storms and perils. Off the Azores the vessels met with rough weather, the little Squirrel being badly knocked about by the storm. Those on the Golden Hinde saw an immense sea almost swallow her up ; but immediately afterwards. Sir Humphrey was seen sitting abaft with a book in his hand, and calling out, ^* Courage, my lads ! we are as near heaven by sea as by land.'' The same night the little ship went down with all her crew, and thus ended the life of one of the most gallant knights who lived in the brave days of Elizabeth. SIR WALTER RALEIGH. CHAPTER III. THE VOYAGES TO VIRGINIA* The sad fate of Sir Humphrey Gilbert only made Raleigh the more resolute to succeed. From the queen he obtained a charter allowing him to carry on the same work of exploration which had cost Sir Humphrey his life. The occupation by Englishmen of newly-discovered lands was provided for, Raleigh and his heirs being appointed governors, upon condition of paying homage to Queen Elizabeth, and hand- ing over to her and her heirs a fifth part of all the precious metals that were found. To aid in the progress of exploration, Raleigh and his youngest half-brother. Sir Adrian Gilbert, along with others, formed the Fellowship for the Discovery of the North- West Passage. The charter granted to Raleigh is an important document in the history of our Colonial Empire, for it marks off Sir Walter from the captains, who, before his time, had taken to exploration. Their intention was not to settle the lands they found, but to obtain riches, either through the natives, or by discovering gold and silver for themselves. Raleigh's aim, as shown in the charter, was SIR WALTER RALEIGH, to settle the new-found lands with people of his own race, who would make their homes there for good. In a sentence, the difference was that Raleigh was a coloniser, while the others were more or less adventurers. He lost no time, for, a month after the issue of the charter, he sent out two ships under the command of Captains Philip Amadas and Arthur Barlow, with orders to make their way from the South, as Gilbert had done from the North. About the middle of July they reached the Island of Wokoken, off the coast of North Carolina, which at first they took to be part of the continent they had come to seek. It was indeed a pleasant land. Many useful animals were found ; tall cedar-like trees and grape-laden vines grew in abundance, spices filled the air with their perfume, and grains were plentiful. For two days the English sailors saw no signs of any inhabitants, but, on the third day, a boat appeared in which were three natives, with whom they at once made friends. Having given them presents of cloth, they sent them away, and, on the next day, a chief called Granganimeo, a brother of the king of these reerions, came with numerous followers. The chiefs wife arrived soon after, dressed in a robe of deer-skin, and wearing long strings SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 41 of pearls as large as peas. Natives and English became the greatest of friends, and, after barter- ing some of their goods for pearls and skins, the English persuaded two of the Indians to go with them to England, where they arrived safely about the middle of September. Immediately upon their arrival, Raleigh set about preparing a larger expedition, for the purpose of planting settlements in these newly- discovered lands, to which the name Virginia was given in honour of Elizabeth — the Virgin Queen. Early next year, a fleet of seven vessels set sail from Plymouth, under the command of Sir Richard Grenville. Several well-known men went with the expedition — Ralph Lane, whom Raleigh had appointed governor, Philip Amadas, the deputy governor, and Thomas Cavendish, the second Englishman to sail round the world, being among them. The two Indians, who had come to England upon the return of the first expedition, also sailed with them that they might tell their friends of the greatness, power, and riches of England. Nowadays we should think it strange if a ship carrying emigrants interfered with the vessels of another nation, and took them as prizes. This was exactly what Raleigh's second expedition did, for, on the way out to Virginia, 42 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. the English ships captured some valuable vessels at Porto Rico. The state of affairs between England and Spain, however, made the action of the fleet under Grenville appear quite proper. Each country was suspicious of the other. Philip II. of Spain was thoroughly hated by Englishmen, and it was almost an open secret that he was fully determined to invade England, if he found a favourable opportunity. Then there was the question of trading rights. The Spaniards regarded the whole of the New World as being their own private property, near which the ships of other powers had no business whatever. English seamen, on the other hand, felt it their duty to prowl about the Spanish colonies, both for the purpose of establishing trade with the natives, and of striking a blow against the power of Spain, by destroying her settlements and capturing the treasures meant to enrich her king and pay her soldiers. Besides patriotism and the desire for more trade, the personal point of view of the sailors must be taken into account. The cruel treat- ment suffered by English seamen unlucky enough to fall into the hands of Spain was, in itself, sufficient to excite bitter hatred against that country. SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 43 Many English vessels set out with the one aim of capturing Spanish treasure ships. Of this Queen Elizabeth was quite aware, and was glad to know it was being done, though she generally made a pretence of being angry about it. The sailors, however, understanding the queen's position, carried on their raids, and then submitted to her displeasure with all due humility. The emigrants sent out by Raleigh were men of bold and daring character, and it is not a matter for wonder that they should have seized the chance of enriching themselves and damaging Spain, at one and the same time. The fleet reached Wokoken in June, and messengers were sent to inform the chiefs that their friends of last year had come again to visit them. Granganimeo was received with honour on board the Tiger^ the mainland was explored for a considerable distance, and more than a hundred men were left under the command of Lane to form a colony. Grenville, having promised to return by the following Easter with provisions for the new plantation, sailed for England at the end of August. Virginia'' (North Carolina) was well suited to the needs of Europeans, yet the first attempt to colonise it proved a failure. This was due to several causes. The settlers were entering upon work which was new to them ; no others of their 44 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. countrymen had tried that mode of life, and therefore they had not the experience of former settlers to guide them. In the second place, they did not understand how to govern the native races, by means of straightforward firm- ness, joined to unfailing good temper and strict justice. The early colonists failed in these qualities, and a heavy punishment for some trifling offence roused a spirit of sullen discontent among the Amerindians. Upon this incident hung the fate of the plantation. A native chief was kept in chains as a surety for the good behaviour of his people, and, during his captivity, he told the settlers wonderful tales of a land in the interior, where the inhabitants were so rich that even their houses were covered with pearls. Lane, deceived by this tale, made his way into the interior, taking about half the colony with him. The kindly Granganimeo had died shortly before this, and the protecting power of his friendship being removed, a plot was speedily formed to slay all the white men in the colony. Lane was told of this plot during his journey, and returned in time to prevent it being carried out. The king and some of his chiefs were put to death for the part they had taken, upon which the natives, finding themselves unable SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 45 to cope with the colonists, ceased to work in the fields. Food supplies ran short, and Easter came without any signs of Grenville. Naturally enough the colonists lost heart, and were glad to be taken home when the opportunity offered. Sir Francis Drake was the man who helped them out of their difficulty. In September 1585 he set off on his famous voyage to the West Indies, beginning his journey by a daring descent upon the Spanish harbour of Vigo, The furious Spaniards talked about swallowing up England without more ado ; but, as one of their own admirals remarked, England had many teeth, and was as ready to attack Spain as Spain was to meddle with her. Continuing his voyage, Drake reached the West Indies, and, having inflicted a great deal of damage upon the Spanish possessions there, began his homeward journey. Wishing to see for himself how the Virginian colony was prospering, he visited it on his way to England, and arrived just as the settlers had abandoned all hope. Seeing no hope of im- proving their position in the colony, they asked Drake to take them home, which he did, England being reached at the end of July. 46 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. Curiously enough, they had hardly left Virginia, when a ship sent by Grenville (who had been delayed by other business) appeared before the settlement with provisions, and a day or two later Sir Richard himself arrived with his squadron. Though he found no trace of the settlers, Grenville was able to persuade fifteen of his men to remain in the plantation, and then, having given them provisions for two years, he sailed for the Azores. The arrival of Lane and his colonists in England was a bitter disappointment to Raleigh, who, however, began to plan another settlement. He had not the least difficulty in obtaining volunteers, and, in the spring of 1587, a second band of colonists was sent out under Captain John White. On reaching Virginia they found no traces of the fifteen men whom Grenville had left. They had all been killed by the Amerindians. Short as the time was which had passed since their death, the little settlement was beginning to disappear beneath the rank growth of the semi-tropics, and the hearts of the colonists failed them as they gazed on the scene. Soon they began to quarrel among themselves, with the result that the second attempt to establish a settlement in Virginia came to nothing. For some little while after this no further SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 47 efforts were put forth to establish plantations in x\merica, for the energies of all Englishmen were now bent upon defeating the schemes of Spain. CHAPTER IV. THE ARMADA AND AFTER. Since the year 1583 Philip II. had been plan- ning an invasion of England. The causes which led to the struggle may be put under three heads — Religion, Politics, and Trade ; but these forces so often acted together that it is not always possible to determine what the effect of each one was by itself. As Philip was regarded as the leader of the Catholic party in Europe, while Elizabeth was looked upon as the head of the Protestants, most Englishmen were convinced that the real cause of the rivalry between their country and Spain was religious differences, and that all other reasons were of rnuch less importance. To a certain extent this view was correct ; but, as states- men both in Spain and England perceived, the struggle was one in which England was fight- ing for her very existence as a nation, and was brought about as much by politics and commerce as by religion. 48 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. For nearly a century the Spaniards had held the key which unlocked the golden treasure of the West, and had forbidden other nations to venture near the waters of the New World. As a result Spain was gathering wealth very rapidly, both from the gold and silver brought home by her treasure ships, and from the trade established with the natives. Naturally, the ships of other countries dared the power of Spain, and sailed to the rich lands of the West. When captured, as they often were, these foreign -seamen were treated very cruelly by the Spaniards, and this, again, made their friends and fellow-countrymen eager for revenge. One result w-as that many English seamen, instead of sailing into the forbidden waters of the West, simply waited about and captured the Spanish treasure ships and merchant vessels as they crossed the Atlantic on their homeward voyage. As English ships would have been served in the same way by Spanish vessels, the actions of such sea-dogs as Drake and Hawkins, and, now and again, Raleigh, cannot justly be called — as Philip called them — Piracy. Then, Queen Elizabeth had interfered with Philip's plans in the Netherlands by aiding the Dutch in their revolt against Spanish authority. Again, England was a growing sea SIR WALTER RALEIGH. power, and, on that account, disliked the seizure of Portugal by Spain in 1580 ; and the heir to the Portuguese throne, Don Antonio, found a refuge and support among Englishmen, even though — and this shows how far the struggle was from being merely a religious one — he was a Catholic. If these things were enough to anger Spain, it must be borne in mind that Philip had sent aid to the Irish rebels, laid claim to the throne of England, and plotted against Elizabeth even in her own kingdom. In addition, there was always the fear that he might make himself master of the English Channel by fortifying the harbours of the Low Countries; and when, to prevent this, hiizabeth formed an alliance with the Dutch in 1585, Philip laid an embargo upon all English ships in Spanish harbours — that is, he caused them to be seized, and prevented them from leaving the ports in which they were lying. This really brought about a state of war. Had it not been for the cautious policy of Elizabeth, war would have broken out much sooner than it did. As it was, Drake sailed to Cadiz and burned eighty ships — singeing the king of Spain's beard was the humorous way in which he spoke of the exploit — afterwards de- stroying all the fishing fleets lying between Cadiz and Cape St. Vincent, and thereby stopping the O.N. D 50 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. supply of tunny fish needed to victual the Spanish fleet. This action delayed the proposed invasion for a year, gave England time to prepare for her defence, and destroyed the feeling that Spain was almost invincible. In the preparations made to resist the Spanish invasion Raleigh took a considerable share. In 1586, that is, a year before Drake had singed the king of Spain's beard," two of his ships fought the Spaniards off the Azores, and, when it became evident that the Armada was at last on the point of setting out, he helped to raise the men of Devon and Cornwall. Along with Lord Grey, Ralph Lane, who had led the Virginian colonists. Sir Richard Gren- ville, and others, he served on a committee of defence, which made arrangements for the repulse of the Spaniards if they should land. But, though for the moment concerned mainly with the land forces, he placed most of his trust in the navy. The sea, in his opinion, must always be England's first line of defence"; and to that opinion v/e still cling three cen- turies after the death of him who first gave it expression. The story of the defeat of the Armada is well known. On 24th May it set out, carrying, in addition to sailors and oarsmen, no fewer then twenty thousand soldiers, the finest infantry in SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 51 the world. The voyage began badly, many of the smaller vessels being sunk in a storm off Cape Finisterre, the remainder putting back for repairs. On 12th July it sailed again, and a week later appeared in the Channel. The English ships allowed the immense fleet to go past them, and then hung on grimly, doing much damage to the Spaniards. Raleigh was not present at the first fight on 21st July, as his duties kept him on shore, but, as soon as it was plain that the Spaniards could not land off Portland, he joined the English fleet. Several engagements took place, but the Armada did not seem very much the worse, and came to anchor at Calais. Two men of Bideford, however, steered eight fireships among the Spaniards, who cut their cables and fled out to sea. The English at once stood in between them and Calais, and, driven by the west wind, the Armada had to re-form off Gravelines, a port of the Spanish Netherlands lying close to France. Here a terrible battle, lasting nine hours, was fought, in which the Spanish ships were almost completely crippled. Fleeing to the north-east, they met with heavy gales, bore round the north of Scotland, and, at length, reached Spain, a poor battered remnant of the majestic fleet that had sailed forth so proudly a short time before. To this defeat the SIR WALTER RALEIGH. better seamanship of the English, their fire ships, and the storms that overtook the Spaniards all contributed. But two other points are often missed. The first is that the English adopted a new plan of fighting. The Spaniards were accustomed to get close to their enemy and board him ; the English sailors, on the other hand, hung off, and poured in a deadly fire from their cannon. The Spaniards were unable to return this with effect, their vessels being so high that their fire passed over the English ships. The second point is that Philip kept complete control of the expedition in his own hands, just as he did in other matters. Such a task was too great for any one man, and, if Philip had but made use of the experience of his best seamen, the result might have been very different. Spain had done her utmost to crush England, and had failed. She must now suffer the penalty of her failure. Numerous attacks, in some of which Raleigh shared, were made upon her shipping, and, in 1589, an expedition went to aid Don Antonio in his attempt to drive the Spaniards from Portugal. Owing to mismanage- ment the effort was not successful. Among the attacks made upon the Spaniards, Grenville's fight off the Azores was one of the most notable. An English squadron, under SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 53 the command of Lord Thomas Howard, had sailed for the purpose of capturing the Spanish treasure fleet on its return from the West Indies. Raleigh was to have gone, but, as the queen wished him to remain at court, his place was taken by his cousin, Sir Richard Grenville. On this occasion the Spaniards, knowing what was intended, sent a squadron to protect the treasure fleet, and the English were caught at the Azores. Howard, with five ships of war, managed to slip away; but Sir Richard Gren- ville, in the Revenge^ waited till he had brought on board ninety of his crew who were lying sick on shore. There was now no hope of escape, and the Revenge turned on her foes. For several hours she fought the whole Spanish squadron. Her masts were shot away, her hull was riddled with shot, and the powder all used ; the weapons of the seamen were twisted and broken, many of the sick and numbers of the sailors who had taken part in the action were dead, while of the rest scarcely one was left unwounded. Grenville himself, though wounded in the head and the side, fought his ship with superb bravery to the last, and even wished to blow her up, lest, when the sailors were no longer able to defend her, she should be captured by 54 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. the Spaniards. But the end came at length, and, as Sir Richard lay dying, the Revenge was surrendered. Grenville was carried cn board a Spanish vessel, where he died, declaring that he had done nothing but his duty. The Spaniards, being brave men themselves, treated the dead hero with the highest respect. The gallant little Revenge never entered a Spanish port as a prize, for she sank in a storm soon after hei capture. When news of his extraordinary fight reached England, Sir Richard was blamed by certain people, because he had lost one of the queen's ships. In order to defend the memory of his cousin from these attacks, Raleigh published an account of the battle, ^*The Truth of the Fight about the Isles of the Azores,*' in language the beauty of which places him among the best writers of English prose. Grenville's gallant action encouraged the English to make war upon Philip at sea, and a fleet was got ready by Raleigh for that purpose. After he had set sail, a vessel, sent by the queen, ordered him to return, and on his arrival in England he was confined in the Tower, because he had married without asking Elizabeth's consent. SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 55 While he lay in the prison, the fleet he had gathered together captured a Spanish ship, the Madre de Dios^ the cargo of which was sold for 50,000, or at present-day value ;^750,ooo. Raleigh presented his share to the queen, and on account of this was permitted" to leave the Tower. He retired to Sherbourne, but his restless spirit would not allow him to be idle. He eagerly desired to regain the queen's favour, but, as no hope of this seemed to exist at the moment, he resolved to go upon an exploring expedition to Guiana. CHAPTER V. THE FIRST VOYAGE TO GUIANA. The voyage to Guiana in 1595 gives Raleigh a real claim to be considered as an explorer. In the exploration and attempted settlement of Virginia he had no actual personal share, though the work had been carried out under his orders ; on the Guiana voyage he did not merely send others^ — he went himself. He was unhappy at his exclusion from the court, and desired to regain the queen's favour. An expedition to Guiana seemed to offer him the chance to do this, 56 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. as well as to enrich himself by openings up for England a land which had baffled the utmost efforts of the Spaniards. Concerning Guiana various tales were told. Far beyond its wide-spreading forests and deadly swamps there stood a city — El Dorado — the wealth of which was marvellous. Thither the Princes of Peru had gone when beaten by the Spaniards. Once a year, so the story ran, the prince who ruled these regions went to a lake where he was covered from head to foot with scented resin, upon which a coating of gold dust was placed. Then, entering a canoe, he paddled to the middle of the lake and threw himself into the water, that the offering of gold dust might take away the sins of his people. Part of this tale may have been true ; but, little by little, additions were made, till at last the gilded chief became the golden city. Raleigh has been blamed for having been led away by this legend ; but he was not the only one to be deceived. Numerous expedi- tions led by Spaniards and Portuguese had tried, and failed, to find the wonderful city of El Dorado. In I594» Raleigh sent Captain Whiddon, who had commanded the Roebuck in the fight against the Armada, to examine the mouths of the Orinoco ; but, having suffered by the treachery SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 57 of the Spaniards, Whiddon had to return home, and Raleigh prepared to go upon the voyage himself. The work was pushed on rapidly, and Raleigh put into the venture all the money he could gather together. He received a commission to do as much damage as possible to the king of Spain, to make settlements in lands not yet occupied, and to drive off by force of arms any who should attempt to establish colonies within two hundred leagues of those settlements. The Lord High Admiral gave a ship, the Lion's Whelps as his share of the expense, and Cecil also helped to equip the expedition. A letter written to Sir Philip Sidney at this time says : There is great means made for Sir Walter Raleigh's coming to the Court. He lives about London very gallant. His voyage goes forward, and my Lord Treasurer ventures with him ;^500 in money. Sir Robert Cecil ventures a new ship bravely furnished. The very hull stands in ^800.'' On the 6th of February, 1595, Sir Walter set sail from Plymouth, and, on his way, captured some Spanish vessels at the Canary Islands. By March he had reached Trinidad, where he 58 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. was joined by his life-long friend, Captain Keymis. Having punished the Spaniards for their treachery toward Captain Whiddon, Raleigh began the work of exploration in earnest. Two wherries, a light boat from the Lion's Whelpy and an old boat so patched up and treated that it drew no more than five feet of water, formed the expedition which was to convey up the Orinoco a hundred men with provisions for a month. The first guide did not know his way very well, but an old man, who was acquainted with the puzzling nelw^ork of streams, having been captured and kindly treated (Raleigh, like Drake, knew how^ to deal with natives), was of considerable service to them. He guided them through the country belonging to the Tivitivas, a people who, rearing no crops, lived on the wild fruits of the land, and on animals killed in the chase. It w^as a hard journey ; the heat was over- powering, and only a short distance could be covered each day. Food ran short, though fruits, fish, and wild fowl were occasionally to be obtained. Many lost faith in the guide ; some were for hanging him ; but he begged them to keep on, and at length their spirits rose. One morning, at daybreak, they found the SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 59 character of the country entirely changed. The dense forest growth along the banks of the river, linked up from side to side by a tangled mass of creepers, through which they had often to cut their way with axes, gave place to wide-spreading meadows. Here and there little woods, in which lived herds of deer, were seen upon the broad plains, wild fowl appeared in abundance, while the river itself swarmed with caimans. Journeying farther up the river, they obtained a new guide, the old one being sent back loaded with presents for himself, and carrying a message to the ships. At length the mountains of Guiana came into view. All this time the sailors had been on one of the streams forming the delta of the Orinoco ; now they entered upon the main river. The natives were friendly, and supplied them with bread, fish, tortoise eggs, and wine. A little way beyond this the inhabitants of the country used arrows, the tips of which were touched with a deadly poison. Sailing up the Orinoco for five days, they came to the port of Morequito, where a native chief presented them with various gifts, among them being the armadillo, barred over with small plates." Parting on good terms with this chief, Raleigh tried to ascend the 6o vSIR WALTER RALEIGH. Caroni (Caroli, he calls it), but the strength of the current proved too great. Leaving the boats, Raleigh, with a small number of men, set off to examine the falls of the river, of which he had heard wonderful reports, while Whiddon was despatched to search for gold and silver. It was near this place that they heard the tale of the Ewaiponoma, a tribe of men whose heads were in their shoulders, and their mouths in the middle of their breasts. The belief probably arose from the appearance given to the natives by the peculiar kind of head-dress they wore. The heavy rains and the swollen waters of the rivers prevented the expedition from going any farther, and the return jowney was begun. Keymis was sent overland to examine a gold- mine he had found, and returned with a very favourable report. During the whole of this time the expedition had lost only one man — a negro — who was killed by caimans while bathing; but Captain Whiddon died at Trinidad on the way home. While Raleigh was away, his enemies in England were working against him, and the queen still continued to treat him with cold- ness after his return. Most people did not believe the story of the discoveries he had SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 6i made, and it was not till he wrote a book — The Discovery of Guiana — that popular feeling changed to his side. After a while Keymis went back to Guiana, and, on his return, brought word that the Spaniards had made a settlement at the mouth of the Caroni, and had forbidden any one to approach the gold-mine Keymis had previously discovered. CHAPTER VI. A patriot's reward. Though there was no actual war at this time between England and Spain, it cannot be said there was peace, as sea-fights occurred every now and then. To humble Spain, and to prevent Philip from getting together a second armada, an expedition was fitted out under the -command of Howard, Raleigh, and Essex, for the purpose of making an attack upon Cadiz. In June 1596, the English fleet entered the harbour of that town, and did serious damage to the shipping, sinking no less than thirteen men-of-war, blowing up the fortifications, and destroying the stores. In this expedition Raleigh did excellent service. Though Raleigh shared in the attack upon 62 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. Cadiz, he had not yet been forgiven by the queen. At the beginning of April 1597, how- ever, news reached England that Philip II. was preparing yet another Armada to invade England, part of his plan being to place one of his daughters on the English throne. A fleet of one hundred and forty ships was at once raised, the command being given to Essex, with Howard as second, and Raleigh next in order as leaders. Elizabeth now forgave Raleigh and received him at court before the expedition sailed. Relying upon what proved to be false in- formation, Essex made his way to the Azores, and, through bad management, allowed the Spanish Plate-Fleet to slip past him and reach Spain in safety. Having missed the object of their search, the English vessels returned home. On the very day the English ships began the return voyage, a Spanish fleet left Ferrol to invade England. Exactly the same thing happened in the case of this armada as had happened to its famous namesake. Reaching the Channel, the flotilla met with contrary winds, and the ships parted company with one another. They failed to come together again, and each, on its own account, returned to Spain. During the later years of Queen Elizabeth's SIR WALTER RALEIGH. 63 reign, Raleigh's enemies turned James VL of Scotland (the heir to the throne of England) against him, and when James came to England on the death of the queen in 1603, he showed little Ukmg tor the brilliant man whose nature was so different from his own. The miserable character of James might be passed over in silence, but for its effect upon Raleigh. Awkward and shambling in his gait, and wearing his clothes padded in order to avoid possible dagger strokes, James was the very opposite of his handsome English subject. The learning which Raleigh possessed was deep, and was the result of hard study ; that of James was all on the surface; and, while the knight made no vulgar parade of his know- ledge, the king never tired of doing so. Raleigh was not by any means the man to enjoy the company of fools, and his happi- ness in the presence of the wisest fool in Christendom " could not have been great. He must have had a hearty contempt for the mean- spirited man who, almost without protest, suffered his mother to be put to death, merely because he wished to inherit the throne of the queen responsible for the execution. It was not long before these two men came into conflict. Raleigh was arrested in 1603, 64 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. and charged with treason on evidence supplied mainly by a man called Cobham, who after- wards confessed that his statements were untrue. The trial was conducted with great brutality, and in this the lawyer Coke distinguished himself. **Thou hast an English face, but a Spanish heart,*' he said to the unfortunate Raleigh. This to a man whose whole life had been governed by the deepest hatred of Spain ! Many years previously, Raleigh wrote these w^ords : Let not therefore any Englishman, of what religion soever, have other opinion of the Spaniard, but that those whom he seeketh to win in our nation he esteemeth base and traitorous, unworthy persons, or inconstant fools.'* And this was the man who had a Spanish heart ! Raleigh was found guilty of being a traitor, and sentenced to death. The judgment was not carried out at once, however, and the unfortunate knight was kept in the Tower for twelve years. Prince Henry was much annoyed that his father should treat Raleigh in this cruel manner. Would any one but my father keep such a bird in a cage?" he asked in anger. It has been mentioned before that, though Raleigh was a favourite among the people of Devon, he was not well liked by most of those SIR WALTER R.ALE1GH, 65 who lived in and around London. But, during his long- confinement in the Tower, almost everybody regarded him as one who was being unjustly treated by the king. By means of bribes paid to the king's unworthy favourites, he was set free at the end of January 1615. He did not receive real liberty, however, his movements being constantly spied upon by orders of the king. In 1617 Raleigh was allowed to go out to Guiana in order to work the gold-mine dis- covered on his first visit to that country. Guiana was now in the hands of Spain, and the Spanish ambassador in England offered Raleigh a passport if he cared to accept it. Sir Walter refused, because, on his first voyage, he had claimed the country for England, and if the Spaniards were then in possession, they really had no business there. If, then, he had accepted the passport, he would have admitted that the Spaniards had a right to the district of Guiana — which he certainly did not mean to do. Into this new venture Raleigh put ^10,000, while others who joined him added three times as much. When the expedition reached Guiana, the landing of the Englishmen was opposed by the Spaniards, and in a sharp action Raleigh's son was killed. Frantic with grief. Sir Walter 66 SIR WALTER RALEIGH. blamed his old friend, Captain Keymis, as being the cause, and Keymis, unable to bear his leader's rebuke, took his own life. At this time James L wished to conclude an alliance with Spain, and the Spanish ambassador, aware of this, saw an excellent opportunity of getting rid of Raleigh. He informed James that Spain was much displeased with Sir Walter on account of his actions in Guiana, and the mean-spirited king, afraid that his own plans would come to nothing, offered to hand over the gallant explorer to the Spaniards to deal with as they might think fit. This, however, did not suit the Spaniards, who left James to do the work himself. When Raleigh returned home, therefore, he was seized and put in prison, not on a new charge, but on the old one on which he had been placed in the Tower at the beginning of the king's reign. A fortnight later the end came. That he might leave his affairs in better order, Raleigh asked for a short respite, and was refused. About nine o'clock on the morning of 29th October he was summoned to execution. On the scaffold he spoke with a clear voice, declaring himself to be innocent of the crime laid to his charge, and, kneeling down, asked the assembled people to pray for him. Then, while his lips still moved in prayer, he laid his head on the SIR WALTER RALEIGH, 67 block, and in two strokes of the axe it fell. Not a shout greeted the showing of the head by the executioner ; the people were horror- istricken, and turned away in silence. The first man who trusted himself to speak cried out, We have not such another head to be cut off!^' Thus perished at the age of sixty-six a great man, not only of his own time but of all times. Whether we think of him as a scholar, states- man, soldier, sailor, explorer, patriot, philo- sopher, poet, captive, or friend, we find some- thing to admire in his character. The jealousy of his rivals, and the ill-will of a petty-minded monarch embittered the last fifteen years of his life ; but his name is now mentioned with honour, while theirs is in many cases almost or altogether forgotten. He has come to be regarded as the type of the better qualities of the men of his time, while they represent the meaner spirits. Among those engaged in the work of exploration during that age he holds a distinguished place, as he was probably the first who thought of establishing an English-speaking race in the New World. His endeavours to plant colonies in Virginia, and his exploration of the Orinoco will give him a lasting place in the story of the growth of the British Empire. III. — Rene Robert Cavelier, Sieur De La Salle. The famous La Salle, who explored so much of the American continent, was a member of a wealthy merchant family at Rouen. When twenty-three years of age he emigrated to Canada, where the superior of the seminary of St. Sulpice granted him a large tract of land eight or nine miles above Montreal. He had not been long in Canada before his imagination was fired by the tales he heard from the Amerindians of a great river called the Ohio, (probably the Mississippi) which flowed into the sea at a distance of eight or nine months' journey from the place where they then were. It struck La Salle that this might prove to be the long-sought Gulf of California, and that the northern waterway to China was on the point of being discovered. This was too good an opportunity to let slip, and the young man determined to make the attempt himself if he could obtain any help towards the expenses of an expedition. He therefore spoke to Courcelles, the governor of New France, and found him strongly in LA SALLE. 69 favour of the proposed expedition. He granted La Salle letters patent permitting him to carry on explorations in the neighbourhood of the river mentioned. But there was still considerable difficulty in front of the would-be explorer. He was not by any means a rich man, and, in order to raise funds for the expedition, he was forced to sell the land he held near Montreal. With the proceeds he bought four canoes, and obtained the services of fourteen men. Just at this time another expedition was being sent to the Amerindians by the missionaries working in Canada. La Salle joined it, and the two bands set off together, their combined forces amounting to seven canoes and twenty-four men. They first ascended the St. Lawrence about the middle of the year 1669, and, passing through Lake Ontario, met the explorer Joliet returning to Canada after one of his expeditions into the interior. From him they obtained maps of the northern lakes, and were told such a tale of the ignorance and spiritual wants of the Indians of that district that the missionaries under Dollier De Casson resolved to go to them at once. This, of course, weakened La Salie's party, but he did not give up on that account. After all, his expedition was no smaller than he had 70 LA SALLE, expected it to be at first. He therefore parted from the missionaries, and for two years explored a great deal. Unfortunately, we do not know exactly what he did during those years, as all the letters and papers relating to his journeys have been lost. We do know a little about them, however. He turned south-east from Lake Erie, and reached a branch of the Ohio River, which he followed as far as Louisville Rapids. It is quite possible that he went down the stream till it joined the Mississippi, and if so, it was here that his men deserted him. Even this did not damp the courage of La Salle, and, with grim courage, he made the best of his way back to Lake Erie alone. By the year 167 1 he was preparing another expedition, of which, as in the case of the first one, we have not very much information. Going up the Detroit River, he passed on to Lake Huron, and thence to Lake Michigan. Then, crossing the portage near where Chicago now stands, he went down the Illinois River, and may have gone as far as the Mississippi. He returned to Canada before 1673, and, laying before Count Frontenac the results of the expedition just completed, proposed that a fresh journey should be begun at once for the purpose of exploring the Mississippi. To this LA SALLE. 71 Frontenac agreed, but thought it better to wait a little till La Salle had rested after his exertions. Feeling that the explorer deserved some re- ward for his enterprise, Frontenac gave him lands in the West, near to where the town of Kingston now stands, A rich fur trade was possible in that district, and La Salle was granted the monopoly of it. In 1674, and again in 1677, Frontenac sent La Salle to France that he might push his fortunes at court. On his arrival in the land of his birth, he was received with favour, and was granted letters patent to explore, at his own cost, the district in which he was interested, provided that the whole survey was completed within five years. He was also to build forts, and to establish a monopoly in bison skins, in order to pay himself for the expenses of his expeditions. As La Salle had not money enough to begin such an undertaking, the first thing he did was to raise funds. This was not difficult, and soon he sailed for Canada with thirty men, and material enough to make a start with his new expedition. In November 1678 La Mothe Cadillac had left Fort Frontenac with seventeen men in a vessel of ten tons, and reached Niagara River, where he built a fort. By this time La Salle had 72 LA SALLE. reached Canada again, and, going in the same direction as La Mothe Cadillac, joined him at the fort at the beginning of 1679. Not long afterwards their vessel was wrecked ; but the explorers set to work to build another, which they named the Griffon. Though their stores had been saved from the wreck, they had not enough to keep them in comfort, and La Salle set off for Fort Frontenac. Leaving Lake Erie, he journeyed to Lake Michigan, where the Griffon was laden with furs, and sent back to La Mothe Cadillac. Probably she was wrecked, as she was never heard of again. With four canoes and seventeen men. La Salle now sailed up the west shore of Lake Michigan, while his lieutenant took the east side. They met at the Miami, or St. Joseph River, at the south-east corner of the lake, where they built a fort. Then proceeding up the St. Joseph River, they reached a tributary of the Illinois River, where they found a village of Amerindians, containing four hundred and sixty lodges. Farther on they came upon another, where La Salle learned of attempts that were being made by the fur traders and the Jesuits to prevent him carrying out his plans, and even to kill him if no other way of attaining their object was possible. LA SALLE. 73 At this point in the journey several of his men deserted, but the explorer determined to go on with the work he had taken in hand. A fort, which he called Fort Crevecceur, was soon constructed, and a vessel of forty tons built. Leaving Tonti or Tonty (an Italian, possibly), his lieutenant, in charge of the fort. La Salle with four men proceeded to Fort Frontenac in order to obtain fresh stores. A great disappointment awaited them on their arrival, dishonest agents having plundered the stores and stolen the goods that had been left there for safety. To make matters worse, while La Salle was away, Tonti's men mutinied, and deserted him, and the leader, on his return, at once set out to look for his lieutenant. It was a difficult business, as he was unable to obtain any information as to the direction Tonti had taken. The difficulty was made greater from the fact that the Amer- indians, having invaded Illinois, had left it in a state of utter ruin and waste. In the search for his friend. La Salle went down the Illinois River till he came to the Mis- sissippi, but having heard no news of Tonti, he was obliged to return to Fort Miami. In the meantime, Tonti had gone down the west side of Lake Michigan to Green Bay. It now entered La Salle's mind that by 74 LA SALLE. forming a league of all the Amerindians in the district, under his leadership, he would be able to increase, to an enormous extent, the trade which he was already carrying on with them, and, in addition, would, by this means, keep the Iroquois from repeating the damage they had already worked in the settlements. Finding the Amerindians of the West in favour of the idea, he spent the spring of 1681 travelling among them in order to gain their good- will, and to explain to them exactly what he wanted. Soon after, he rejoined Tonti, and, that he might carry on the work of exploration, went to Fort Frontenac to obtain supplies. Frontenac, the governor, was strongly in favour of the plans which La Salle was seeking to carry out, and another expedition was set on foot. In the month of December, La Salle crossed the Chicago Portage to the Illinois, the course of which he followed on sledges as far as Lake Peoria, from which place he floated down to the Mississippi, reaching that river at the beginning of February 1682. Continuing his journey, he passed the mouth of the Arkansas River, and, farther down, the mouth of the Red River, where he took possession of the whole country in the name of the king of France. LA SALLE. 75 By the beginning of April the party had reached the delta, where La Salle divided his expedition into three, each of the bands taking a separate branch of the delta. Three days later they met at the mouth of the river, and the explorer, having erected a monument in honour of the occasion, and a cross, bearing the arms of France, proclaimed that the river and all the lands drained by it were the property of the French, by right of discovery. Louis XIV. of France ought to have been grateful to his subject for the vast dominions thus added to his possessions, but it is not very probable that the king gave much thought to the man who had made the discovery ; however that may be. La Salle is honoured now as the explorer who first traced the waters of the mighty river from its upper reaches to its mouth. The thought at once occurred to him that this fertile district through which he had passed would make an excellent country for Frenchmen to settle in, and he immediately began to form plans towards that end. Sailing up the river again as far as the Illinois, he there built a fort, called Fort St. Louis, intending it as a centre round which the Amerindians might live. His hopes were not disappointed, as about 76 LA SALLE. twenty thousand natives built their lodges in the neighbourhood. But the expedition was a long way from Canada, to which parties had to be sent for supplies. By this time, Frontenac, who had been so good a friend to La Salle, had returned to France, his place being taken by another Frenchman named De la Barre. Now, De la Barre was a greedy man, and looked on the monopolies held by La Salle as something which ought to belong to him, as governor. The result was that he seized Fort Frontenac, and, sending an officer to take La Salle's place at Fort St. Louis, ordered the explorer to return to Canada. La Salle did so, but, as soon as he could find a ship going to France, he embarked in it, and, on his arrival in that country, immediately went to the king, before whom he laid his case. At Paris, his plans for colonising the basin of the Mississippi met with approval, and a letter from the king was sent to De la Barre, ordering him to restore all he had seized from La Salle. Four vessels were provided for the explorer in order that he might go straight to the Mississippi from France, instead of having to visit Canada in the first place. In July 1684, he left La Rochelle, the fleet being in command of Captain Beaujeu, with LA SALLE. 77 whom the explorer did not agree at all well. When they arrived at the Gulf of Mexico, there were so many inlets and lagoons at the place where La Salle expected to find the mouths of the Mississippi that he became confused. He knew the latitude but not the longitude of the river mouths, and even after a careful search, was unable to find them. This was sufficient to cause a quarrel between him and Beaujeu. The explorer landed his men at Matagorda Bay, thinking he had arrived at the mouths of the Mississippi, and Beaujeu sailed for France, reaching Rochelle in July. By this time La Salle, having discovered his mistake, had established a colony on the Lavaca River. Leaving Lieutenant Joutel in charge, he set off in October, 1685, to see whether he could not find the mouths of the river he had so strangely lost. He continued the search for nearly half a year, and then returned. In April 1686, he tried to reach Canada* but failed. He made a second attempt in the beginning of 1687, but this also was unsuccess- ful. The colony was now in a bad way ; of the hundred and eighty men who had been there at first, not more than forty-five were left. This was serious enough, but to add to the difficulties crowding in upon La Salle, the survivors were discontented, and rose in mutiny. 78 LA SALLE. Some of them laid an ambush for their leader, and the gallant explorer was shot. Most of the mutineers joined the Amerindians ; the few who remained loyal set off with Lieutenant Joutel, and, in course of time, reached one of the forts built on the Arkansas River by Tonti. The murder of La Salle in 1687 was a loss to the cause of civilisation. He had done good work, and was so young a man at the time that he would almost certainly have done even more important service, in increasing the knowledge of the geography of North America. IV. — William Dampien CHAPTER I. THE BUCCANEERS. In dealing with the life of Sir John Hawkins, we saw that the Spaniards did their best to prevent the ships of any nation, other than their own, trading with their western possessions. This was meant to keep the whole trade in their own hands. In reality, its effect was to draw attention very strongly to the vast profits that might be made in the Spanish colonies, if it were possible to get into touch with the inhabitants. This gave rise to a system of underhand trade, and of smuggling, to which the Spaniards in the West were quite willing to give their best aid, but secretly, lest they should be punished by the authorities. The result of this, again, was to increase very largely the number of ships seeking trade in those regions. Then a difficulty arose. When Spanish war- ships found any of these smuggling craft in 8o WILLIAM DAMPIER. forbidden waters, they seized them, while their crews were punished without mercy. If, then, the trade were to be carried on, it was necessary that the vessels going out to the Spanish possessions should be armed in order to resist arrest. It was thus but a short step from the smuggling vessel to the armed privateer. The arming of the trading vessels had the result of turning many of them from simple merchant vessels — even if they did break the law — into ships which became little better than pirate craft. To the men who formed the crews of these vessels the term buccaneers is applied. Going back again to the time of Hawkins, we find that in certain of the West India Islands there were vast herds of cattle. One of these islands was Haiti or San Domingo. The cruelty of the Spaniards to the natives had left that island with very few inhabitants, and the cattle, being un- disturbed, increased to a very large extent, roam- ing over the deserted tracts of the western districts. Haiti (Hispaniola), on this account, gradually came to be the regular stopping-place for ships in need of fresh meat, and soon a small body of men gained a living on the island by killing and dressing the cattle, and supplying meat to the foreign ships which passed that way. The method of preserving the meat was peculiar William Dampicr. WILLIAM DAMPIER. 8i When the animal was killed, the flesh was placed on hurdles raised a few feet above a fire, and thus dried and half smoked. This method of dressing their food was employed by the Caribs, and both the meat thus prepared and the apparatus used for preparing it were called bukan. The men who took up this trade of slaughtering the cattle, adopting the native name, called themselves buccaneers. This looks confusing at first, as it is seamen of whom we think when using that term. Really the matter is simple enough. The smuggling vessels, which cruised at first about the Islands, came for a free trade with the inhabitants, and the crews called themselves freebooters. Naturally, there was a close connection between buccaneer and freebooter : each was necessary to the existence of the other. In some cases, it is true, the buccaneer and the freebooter were combined in the one person ; but, as a rule, they were distinct. In course of time, the buccaneering trade fell into the hands of Frenchmen, while the free- booters were, for the most part, English. With rather a humorous turn of mind the two sets of men each adopted the name of the other, the buccaneer, or preparer of bukan, becoming the buccaneer as the term is generally understood, O.N. F 82 WILLIAM DAMPIER. while the real buccaneers called themselves freebooters. The buccaneers (in the new sense of the term) had strange customs, which were regarded among them as having the force of law. They were wild, ill-living men, enemies to all except their own class, and, as a result, had to depend to the uttermost on each other's fidelity. In some cases, all goods captured w^ere divided among the whole crew equally, that is, the goods were held in common. Carelessness in dress, even dirtiness, was considered by many of the buccaneers as the proper state in which desperate men like themselves ought to live. The crews of these ships belonged mostly to one nation, and, when that nation was at war with any power, the buccaneer often became respectable, received a commission from his government, and appeared in all his glory as a privateer, in which position he was able to behave just as when he was a buccaneer, but with the advantage of having a government commission to safeguard him. The doings of the buccaneers in the Spanish West Indies, and the increase in their numbers, were looked upon with much favour by every state in Europe except Spain, as they might profit by the illegal proceedings of these sailors, while, on the other hand, they were not called upon to WILLIAM DAMPIER. 83 protect them. In addition to this, the presence of the buccaneers in Spanish territory caused that nation to spend money in order to keep them down, which prevented her from moving against other European powers as otherwise she might have done. Gradually the buccaneers increased in strength, and began to band themselves together. Cap- turing the island of Tortuga, off the north-east of Cuba, they made a settlement there, but, being surprised by Spanish troops, those on the island were hanged without mercy as pirates. The buccaneers now saw that they must act together, and without a leader or leaders such action was impossible. In 1654 ^ party of them marched across the country to New Segovia, having ascended the Mosquito River in canoes. They plundered the town and returned in safety. Courage and conduct being the only titles they acknowledged as claims to rank, their leaders were all men noted for personal bravery and daring deeds. Among these leaders, one of the most terrible was Henry Morgan, a Welshman, who, be- ginning with a small body of men, so roused the admiration of his comrades that, at one time, he had under him a fleet of thirty-seven well- armed vessels, with crews to the number of two thousand men 84 WILLIAiM DAMPIER. CHAPTER II. DAMPIER AMONG THE BUCCANEERS. The force of ships and men which Morgan com- manded caused him to make an attempt to capture the town of Panama. A journey of nine days brought him within sight of the city, and after a hard struggle he mastered the Spaniards, who were put to death without mercy, neither age nor sex being spared. Some of the inhabitants tried to escape by taking shelter on the islands in the Bay of Panam^, but Morgan sent a large boat in pursuit, and, like their friends in the city, they suffered death at the hands of the victorious buccaneers. Several ships were captured, one of which seemed well suited for cruising, and, as this opened up a new way of living, several men tried to desert after having seized this boat, their plan being to plunder as much as possible in the South Seas, and then sail for Europe with their spoils. Morgan, however, was wide awake, and the attempted desertion did not take place. From Panama he brought six hundred prisoners (some of whom he compelled to carry burdens down to the coast) and a hundred and seventy-five WILLIAM DAMPIER. • 85 mules laden with valuables. On the principle of " set a thief to catch a thief/' Morgan was, some years later, knighted and made governor of Jamaica, where he distinguished himself by his severity towards his old comrades. In April 1680, a party of three hundred and thirty-one buccaneers, most of them English, among whom was William Dampier, marched across the Isthmus of Darien. At Santa Maria they embarked in canoes and a small vessel which lay near the town, and began their career of plunder in the South Seas. Capturing several vessels, they abandoned their canoes and embarked in the richly-laden prizes. Closely examining the coast at Panama, and finding nothing to keep them there, they laid their course for the coast of Peru, and touched at the island of Juan Fernandez. Wlrile there, several sail hove in sight, and the buccaneers believing them to be Spanish men-of-war, left in hot haste. In their hurry it happened that a Mosquito Indian, named William, who was on shore, had to remain behind, though this is, perhaps, not the first example of a single individual being left on that island. Steering to the south, the buccaneers captured a vessel, the San Rosario^ laden with wine, brandy, fruit, and oil, and as much money as gave the 86 WILLIAM DAMPIER. captors ninety-four dollars each. Besides the goods taken out of the San Rosario were seven hundred pigs of silver, most of which, as the men believed the metal to be tin, was left in the ship when she was turned adrift. When they arrived at Antigua their disgust must have been very great, for a goldsmith declared the metal to be pure silver. The buccaneers had lost fully five thousand pounds by their haste. In their next voyage they called at Juan Fernandez, where they found William, the Mosquito Indian, still alive. He had been on the island alone for more than three years. The clothes which he had worn on landing were com- pletely destroyed, and he had dressed himself in goatskins. He had also built himself a hut, which was lined with goatskins. When first left on the island, he had a musket, a horn of powder, some shot, and a small knife. When his powder was finished the musket was useless, and he would have been badly off for weapons, had he not notched his knife and, by its means, cut the barrel of his musket into pieces, with which he made tips for arrows, lances, and harpoons, as well as a long knife and some hooks. After visiting the Galapagos Islands, where they found plenty of green turtle, the buccaneers split into two divisions. Eaton, in the Nicholas^ WILLIAM DAMPIER. 87 leaving Davis, sailed for the East Indies; Captain Swan, in the Cygnet^ accompanied by many experienced sailors, including Dampier, steered towards the north-west, along the coast of New Spain, hoping to capture some vessels from Manilla, as well as to obtain rich plunder on shore. At St. Pecaque the Spaniards fell on them, and the buccaneers suffered the worst defeat they had yet received in the South Seas. More than fifty Englishmen were killed, as well as some blacks. To follow this expedition from start to finish would not make pleasant reading, as it is a tale of cruelty and bloodshed. Of one thing, how- ever, mention may be made. In the course of the voyage the vessels touched at New Holland, whose inhabitants, according to Dampier, were the most miserable creatures on earth. **The Hottentots," he wrote, compared with them, are gentlemen. They have no houses, animals, or poultry ; their persons are tall, straight-bodied, thin, with long limbs ; they have great heads, round foreheads, and great brows. They have bottle noses, full lips, wide mouths ; the two fore teeth of the upper jaw are wanting in all of them; neither have they any beard. Their hair is short, black, and curled, and their skin coal black, like that of the negroes 88 WILLIAM DAMPIER. in Guinea. Their only food is fish, and they consequently fish for them at low water ; and they make little weirs, or dams, with stones, across little coves of the sea/* Dampier left the Cygnet at the Nicobar Islands and returned to England, where he arrived in 1691. He was afterwards sent on a mission of discovery in the Roebuck^ a ship of the Royal Navy, in which he visited New Holland a second time. His description of kangaroos, which he now saw for the first time, is pretty accurate. The natives were not afraid even when he fired his musket at them, and it was not until he had shot one that they learned to treat him with respect. On the way home, the Roebuck was wrecked ; but that was not Dampier's fault, as the vessel was old and not very seaworthy. However, he finished the business upon which he had been sent by the government. He afterwards took part in privateering ex- peditions, but seems to have been more successful as a pilot than as a commander. Indeed, he was tried for his ill conduct towards one of his lieutenants ; and one of his sailors accused him not only of cruelty and drunken- ness, but of cowardice, which can hardly be true of an old buccaneer. In 1707 he was back in England, a broken WILLIAM DAMPIER. 89 man. His Vindication^ which he published, did him little good ; but he obtained a pilot's place in a privateering expedition, and returned in 171 1 after a lucky voyage. He died in London in 1715. In 1697 he had published his Voyage Round the World \ but it is not as a writer of travels that he will be remembered. His long career of pillage and plunder in Southern Seas, and his voyage to New Holland, are the parts of his life which remain in the history of geographical discovery. If the story of the buccaneers makes sad reading in places, let it be remembered to their credit that their daring voyages did much to extend our knowledge of vast tracts of land and sea hitherto unknown to the majority of men. V. — Captain Vitus Bering. CHAPTER I. EARLY RUSSIAN DISCOVERIES. At the beginning of the sixteenth century Russia was not much more than an inland kingdom. It is, of course, true to say that she had a northern coast, but that, owing to its position, was of httle use. The arrival of Richard Chancellor at Archangel in 1553 was, to the Russians, an event of the greatest impor- tance, and the trading rights given to him by the Tsar were meant to reward him for his discovery of the passage between those northern seas and the Atlantic Ocean. If Russia had been in a fit condition to profit by the discovery, she might have made much progress in trade ; but the country was far too feeble to undertake sea voyages. Even so late as the beginning of the seventeenth century, the northern coast of Siberia, beyond the River Yenisei, was unknown to the Russians, though hunters and other adventurers had travelled through the interior. CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. Gradually Siberia came under the sway of the Tsars, and, following upon this, an advance was made to China. The Russian entry into the Chinese Empire was not effected without a struggle. The Chinese fought bravely, and, as they became acquainted with the use of firearms, held their own fairly well against the invaders, with whom, in 1689, they concluded a treaty. After the signing of this treaty, trade rapidly increased between Russia and China, and was further developed by the efforts of the famous Tsar, Peter the Great. Peter was born in 1672, and, ten years later, became Tsar. Till his time Russia had been very far behind in civilisation, but, though himself in many respects rough, brutal, and even uncivilised, Peter was determined that his country should not remain in its backward state. He therefore sent out to Pekin, in 1692, a Dutchman who was in his service. This Dutchman, Isbrand Ides by name, suc- ceeded so well in his mission that a kind of hotel was allowed to be kept for the use of Russians who might come there to trade. In addition, all the expenses of the traders were paid by the Emperor of China, so long as the merchants remained in the city. At this hotel or camp an annual fair was held by Russian and Chinese merchants ; but it 92 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. was not long before these gatherings became the scene of much drinking and rioting, and, complaints being made to the Emperor of China, he ordered all the Russians to leave the country. This was in 1722, and it was not until six years had passed that another treaty was drawn up between the two countries, allowing the Russian traders to return. This time the Emperor did not pay their expenses, but the Russians obtained permission to build a church in Pekin, and to send a few scholars to that city to learn the Chinese language. In the north of Siberia the progress of the Russians was much more gradual, and there were no very outstanding events. The first settlement was established on the River Lena in 1636, and then followed the discoveries of a Cossack named Michael Staduchin. He went as far to the east as the River Kolima in 1644, and, two years later, a band of adventurers sailed east of this river for two days. Casting anchor in a bay, they entered into trade with the natives ; but, as they could not understand each other except by signs, neither the Russians nor the natives came near to one another. The Russians laid their goods on the shore, and then went off for some distance. CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. 93 When the natives came down to the shore to examine the goods, they took what they fancied, and left in exchange walrus teeth, both carved and in their natural state. The value of the teeth thus obtained was sufficient to cause other merchants to fit out expeditions, and, in 1648, seven vessels departed from the Kolima to go farther east. They sailed through Bering Strait, and went as far round as the River Anadir. Almost as soon as the Russians had estab- lished themselves on the Anadir, they heard strange tales of the people of Kamchatka. These natives were not so tall as the inhabitants of the lands to the north of them. They had long beards and small faces. During the summer months they lived in huts raised above the ground on posts, and in the winter they dwelt underground. In order to preserve their animal food, they wrapped it in leaves, and buried it in the ground till it was quite putrid. The food was cooked by boiling it in wooden or earthen vessels, which were heated by red-hot stones, and it is easy to understand that, as one of the sailors says, the smell of the cookery was so strong that the Russians were unable to bear it. Some years after this expedition, a merchant named Taras Staduchin sailed in the same CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. direction, but, being unable to double the cape at the extreme north-east of Siberia, he left his ships, and went overland through the country of the Chukchi. Of these people we learn that, when they made a solemn promise to do anything, they called upon the sun to be a wit- ness that they would keep their word. Some among them had flocks of reindeer, which obliged them to move from place to place, according as they could find food for the animals. There were not many wild animals, the wolf and the red fox being the most common ; but even of these there were few, as the woods did not afford sufficient shelter. CHAPTER II. BERING'S FIRST VOYAGE. In dealing with Russian discoveries, it may be well to have some idea of the character of the country at the time when they took place. It was noted in the last chapter that when the Tsar, Peter the Great, ascended the throne, Russia was a country of very little importance. It was of vast extent, but it had no sea coast of any use for trade purposes. From the beginning of his reign, Peter CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. resolved that this must be remedied, and, to that end, he bent all his powers to the task of procur- ing a port on the shores of the Baltic Sea. In order that the work might be carried out in a satisfactory manner, he went into Holland and England, in both of which countries he laboured as a shipwright, and learned all he could with regard to the building and furnishing of ships. At a later date he quarrelled with Sweden, and took from that country her Baltic Provinces. Then he began to build the city of Petersburg, on the Neva, in order that he might have an easy road out of Russia into Europe. The work cost many thousands of lives, but Peter con- tinued the task till the city was finished. At that time Russia was a nation whose people had very little learning, knew hardly anything about art, industry, or trade, and were entirely ignorant of the life led by their neighbours in the west of Europe. Even the nobles had but a faint idea of what went on outside Russia. That an end might be put to this state of affairs, Peter sent some of the younger men of rank to study in foreign countries, and also built schools in his own land. Then, in order that Russia might take an important place among the nations of Europe, he had canals made throughout the country, 96 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. and tried to obtain the services of foreigners, who would teach his people the arts of peace and civilisation. In the last chapter it was shown how he did his best to increase the trade with China. It must not be supposed that all these reforms were carried out without difficulty. On the contrary, many of the Russian nobility were bitterly opposed to them, but fear of their terrible Tsar was more than sufficient to make them give way. Nor need it be thought that, while Peter was making Russia more like the nations of the west of Europe, he had any intention of giving his subjects more freedom. The peasants were not much worse off than they had been before his time ; but, under him, the nobles had almost as little freedom as the peasants. In spite of this, however, it was a good thing for Russia that Peter the Great acted as he did, since by bringing the country into touch with Europe, he advanced it in civilisation. His plan of seeking ports, by means of which he would be able to increase the trade of the country, has been followed by the Russians ever since. Wherever they have tried to extend the boundaries of their land, they have always endeavoured to obtain ice-free ports. As was shown in treating of their early CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. 97 discoveries, the Russians pushed their conquests eastward to the coasts of Kamchatka, and it was only a question of time when the hardy sailors and other adventurers who visited those regions would find their way to America. Yet it must be remembered that the voyages into these new lands were not carried on in any regular manner, and to this may be added the fact that the hunters who came there, came as hunters^ and not as discoverers. They were ignorant men, and from them not much, if any- thing, could be learned about the relative positions of America and Eastern Asia. They were not even sure whether the two continents were separated by a strait, or joined together at their northern part. One of the last acts of Peter the Great was to make preparations to have this question solved. A few days before his death, he drew up with his own hand plans for a voyage which was intended to make certain whether Asia was separated from America. The Tsar gave in- structions to build two vessels on the coast of Kamchatka, and with them to examine the sea- line to the north and east, in order to settle the point as to the existence of a strait. The com- mander was also to find out if any European power had a harbour in those parts. An exact record was to be kept of all that might be O.N. G 98 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. discovered, and with this log the commander was to return to Petersburg. The officers chosen to lead the eastern expedition were Captain Vitus Bering, a Dane by birth, and Alexoi Chirikoff, a Russian sailor. Bering was a captain in the Russian navy, and had already given proof of his zeal and ability in the service of the Tsar. As soon as he had received his orders, Bering left Petersburg. The officers and sailors who were to make up the expedition had also to travel from Peter's new city to Siberia, and so many preparations were needed that it was three years later before the expedition started. On the 14th of July, 1728, the explorers sailed from Kamchatka, and in about three weeks reached latitude 64° 30', where they had a visit from the natives. Eight men rowed toward the ships in a boat made of leather, and asked the Russians whence they came and what they wanted. One of the natives swam to the ship upon sealskins filled with air. Talking to the Russians through an interpreter, the visitors said they were Chukchi, and pointed out a small island to the north, which the Russians afterwards called St. Lawrence. Bering did not go farther than latitude 67'' 18', because, seeing no land to the north or east, he beheved he had found out that Asia CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. and America were separated by a strait, which was just what the expedition had been sent to discover. As a matter of fact, he had gone about a degree and a quarter past the most eastern point of x\sia, and, although he did not know it, had sailed through the strait dividing the Old World from the New. This strait was afterwards named Bering Strait, in honour of the sailor who navigated it in 1728. Both Bering and Chirikoff undertook another voyage to the same parts in the following year, but they did not succeed in gaining any new infomiation. It is rather strange that in these voj^ages Bering did not once see the coast of America, nor does he appear to have attempted to make discoveries to the east. The existence of land in that direction was fairly well knovvn ; in fact, it was marked on some of the best maps of the time. A colonel of Cossacks, for example, published a chart at Petersburg two years before the first voyage made by Bering. On this map he marked an island two days' journey to the north of the river Kohma, and beyond this island, two days farther in the same direction, was marked a coast known as the Great Country. Another map showed two islands to the east of the Chukchi country, the one farther off being more than two days' journey from the mainland. 100 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. Beyond these islands, again, there lay a large country full of forests, in which roamed many animals useful to man, both for food and for clothing. CHAPTER III. THE CONQUEST OF THE CHUKCHI. At the very time when Bering was on his voyage to the north, a proposal was made to the Russian government that the conquest of the Chukchi tribe should be undertaken, and an attempt made to discover the extent of their country. The pro- posal was accepted, and Colonel Shestakoff, who had brought the matter before the government, was appointed to the command of a force thought to be strong enough for the purpose. Dmitri Paulutski, a captain of dragoons, was sent to help him, four hundred Cossacks being placed in their charge. In 1727 they set out. Shestakoff, with a small band of a hundred and fifty men, met and gave battle to the whole tribe of the Chukchi. In the fight that took place the Russians were completely defeated, and Shestakoff himself was killed by an arrow. Paulutski, in the meantime, had gathered a force of two hundred and fifteen Russians, and CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. loi over two hundred friendly Siberians. Leaving a fort on the Anadir, at the end of March 1731, he proceeded towards the north, travelling for the greater part of the time upon the ice, being sometimes so far from land that it was not possible to see the mouths of the rivers. On the 7th of June he attacked and defeated the Chukchi, and then continued his march to the north-east. Some days later another battle took place, and then a third one was fought. Among the killed in this last fight was found a man differing in appearance from the other natives who had been slain. His upper lip was pierced for the purpose of receiving an ornament of walrus teeth. Probably he was not a native of the district in which Paulutski was marching, but had come from the American continent. After this battle the Russians journeyed over- land at a very considerable distance from the sea, and, having passed near that cape which they supposed to be the most northerly part of the continent seen by Behring, they proceeded to the Anadir, reaching their fort towards the end of October. This daring march round the most distant part of Siberia, sometimes on ice, and sometimes through the country of a brave and determined enemy, took the Russians six months. Nothing 102 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. but the most tireless patience added to great bodily strength could have carried it through. While these things were going on, a Cossack named Krupishef had received orders to sail round Kamchatka to the country of the Chukchi, that he might be able to help the forces under Shestakoff and Paulutski. Having set sail according to his orders, he waited for some time on the coast of the Chukchi, without being able to find out anything about these two officers. Krupishef 's ship was lying at that part of the coast where Bering's first voyage had come to an end ; but, being driven from his shelter by a sudden gale, he steered to the east, and found an island and then a large country. Almost as soon as the ship came in sight of land, a man in a kayak canoe, like those used by the natives of Greenland, made his way towards the Russians. They learned from him that he was an inhabitant of a large country near at hand, which was well wooded, and contained many wild animals. For two days the Russians followed the coast of this land, but, another storm coming on, they were forced to run for Kamchatka. This voyage of Krupishef was an important one, as it clearly showed that there actually was a strait lying between America and Asia, It also gave encouragement to the Russian government to carry on still further the work of CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. 103 exploration which they had begun. Bering, and the officers who had been with him on his voyages, were rewarded by the government for their services, and other plans were advanced for the purpose of obtaining a better know- ledge of the districts where the gallant sailors had been employed. One of these was to see if it were possible to sail from Archangel to Kamchatka. This object was never accomplished. Many daring attempts were made to examine the northern shores of Siberia, but they were all unfortunate. CHAPTER IV. BERING'S THIRD VOYAGE. Just at the time when these plans were being thought over, an incident happened which made the Russian government more eager than ever to carry through their schemes of exploration. A Japanese vessel, laden with cotton, silk, rice, and spices, was driven out to sea by a gale. After having been battered by the tempest for some time, it was wrecked on the eastern coast of Kamchatka, the crew getting to land, and saving the most valuable part of the ship's cargo. I04 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. The Cossacks left in charge of the place by the Russian government were soon on the spOL; but, not being satisfied with the presents made to them by the poor ship- wrecked sailors, they attacked the unfortunate Japanese, and murdered all of them, excepting an old man and a boy of eleven years. Afterwards the Cossack officer was punished for the cruel deed, and the two Japanese who had been left alive came to Petersburg in 1732. The importance of this affair lies in the fact that it drew the attention of the Russians to the trade that might be established between their country and Japan. It would be more true to say that their attention was drawn to the fact in a stronger way than had been the case before, since Russia had long desired to have trade with this Eastern nation, but did not quite see how it was to be obtained. It now came into their minds that the best thing they could do, if they really wished the trade, was to learn the exact position of Siberia and Japan with regard to each other. The matter does not seem to have been hurried, however, as it was not till the year 1739 that an expedition was sent out for the express purpose of discovering how Japan and the eastern coast of Siberia were related. Martin Spangberg, who had been with Bering CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. 105 in his voyage to the north, was chosen to command, and he had, as second, an EngHsh- man named WiUiam Walton. The voyage was enormously lengthy but un- eventful till they reached the Kurile Islands, where a tempest fell on them, and separated the ships. Spangberg reached the coast of Japan in safety, and saw a large number of vessels sailing from port to port. The country seemed rich, well cultivated, and crowded with villages. The great numbers of Japanese whom they saw, and their ignorance of the customs of these people, made the Russians afraid to go on shore, but one day they counted near their ship no less than seventy-nine fishing-boats. They noticed, too, that in building their boats the Japanese used brass and copper, instead of iron. When the Russians had been in the district for some time, a large boat made its way to them. In it, in addition to the rowers, were four men in beautiful clothing, who looked like noblemen. When they came on board the Russian ship they were invited into the cabin. Immediately they entered, they bowed low, placing their hands over their heads, and remaining in that position till the captain asked them to rise. A globe and a map were shown to them, io6 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. and without any hesitation they pointed to their own land, which they called Nippon. Believing that he had performed the task set him, Spangberg set sail for home. In latitude 43* 50' he came upon a large island, where he cast anchor. This may have been Saghalien. Here he found the inhabitants wearing leather boots, the same as those worn by the natives of the Kurile Islands and Kamchatka. Their language was the same as that of the Kurile Islanders, but the appearance of the people was quite different. They were heathen, and probably worshipped animals, as, when they saw a cock on board the Russian vessel, they fell down on their knees as if in adoration. Meanwhile, what of Walton? Although the storm had separated him from his chief, he arrived in safety at Japan. Like Spangberg, he saw many fishing-boats, and, by following one of the fleets, reached a fine harbour in front of a large tov/n. A Japanese ship came close up to the Russian vessel, and, by signs, her captain invited the crew to land. Walton, who was not so much afraid as Spangberg had been, quickly sent a boat with two empty water-casks, and some presents for the chief men of the place. The inhabitants received the Russians with the very greatest kindness. The shore was lined with the CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. 107 Japanese, who wished to see the strange men who had come irom over the sea. One of them invited the Russians into his house, and set before them all manner of good things. Wines, fruits, and sweetmeats were offered in porcelain dishes. While the sailors we^^j thus being refreshed, the other inhabitants of the town had filled the empty water - casks, and had them ready for the sailors to take back to their ship. The town was built partly of stone and partly of wood, and shops in the streets were numerous. The country round about was fertile and well tilled, heavy crops of rice and peas being grown. Later on, the Japanese visited the ship, and carried on some trade with the sailors on the deck, everything being done by signs, as the two peoples did not know each others* language. Although well satisfied that his voyage was turning out so successfully, Walton felt he must go further along the coast, as by so doing he might discover something of importance. Accordingly, he set sail, and ran to the south along the east side of Japan. Everywhere he found the inhabitants willing to enter into trade with him ; but at length an officer interfered, and put a stop to all exchange of goods between the Russians and io8 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. the Japanese. As a result of this, Walton returned to Kamchatka. It is worthy of note that this voyage of Spangberg and Walton was the first in which the ships of Russia crossed the tracks of other European vessels in Eastern waters. It was not until 1741 that Bering and Chirikoff sailed from Kamchatka for the pur- pose of steering to the east until they touched the continent of America. About a fortnight after the start, the two vessels were separated by a storm, and were never afterwards able to rejoin each other. On the i8th of July, Bering discovered the coast of Alaska. The land appeared dark, gloomy, and forbidding, and yet grand. Huge mountains, covered with snow, were seen stretch- ing far inland, while one in particular towered above all the others. Steller, a German doctor and naturahst with the expedition, had never seen a higher mountain in Siberia, and named it Mount St. EUas. (It was discovered nearly 200 hundred years later to be 17,978 feet high.) Two days later Bering anchored at a small island not far from the mainland, which he visited. Some huts were found there, but no inhabitants, as they had fled. On coming away, the Russians took with them some dried fish, and other food, leaving in its place knives. CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. 109 tobacco, and such trinkets as they thought would please the hearts of those who might receive them. Putting to sea again, Bering sailed for some distance along the coast of Alaska, but had great difficulty in threading his way through the vast number of islands lying off the coast. In one of these islands some men were seen fishing, and the Russians, having landed, tried to make friends with them. They found nine of the natives on shore, but no women were with them, nor were there any signs of canoes or huts. Three Russians went ashore, and, having fastened their boat to a rock, advanced towards the natives. To show the white men that they had nothing to fear, the eldest of the natives entered the boat, and remained there as a hostage of his own free will. The Russian sailors, wishing to show that they were friendly, presented him with a glass of brandy ; but, on putting it to his mouth, the strength of the liquid gave him such a fright that he thought he was betrayed, and to quieten him, he was set on shore. Next day the natives came to the ship in their canoes, bearing with them a rod decorated with feathers as a sign of peace. They also brought with them presents for the white 110 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. men, and seemed to wish to make friends with them. As the wind was freshening, however, the anchor was weighed, and the ship set sail, the natives paddling to the shore as fast as they could. At the end of September the Russians left the Aleutian Isles. The wind was blowing steadily from the west, and the weather was very dirty, a nasty fog hanging over the sea for days together. To make matters worse the sailors were attacked by scurvy, most of them being unfit for work. Thus the vessel was driven along at the mercy of the winds and waves, at a season of the year when tempests were common. For some time past, too, Bering himself had been so unwell that he was not able to take any share in the management of the ship. After tossing about on the sea for a long time, land was at length sighted, and, on the following day, it was resolved to try to effect a landing. Indeed there was nothing else left for the unhappy sailors to do, for the ship was badly knocked about, and was in a leaky condition, while the health of the sailors had not improved. As the ship ran for the coast, the sea was very high, and, the strength of the waves proving too CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. iii much for it, the unfortunate vessel was driven on a rock. A huge wave forced the ship over the reef on which it had struck, and plunged it into smooth water ; but, so weak were the sailors, that they were unable to do anything to patch the vessel up so as to continue the voyage. Besides, the season of the year and the tempestuous seas made the men glad that they had obtained even this piece of good luck, and they determined to remain there for the winter. All who were able to work at all went ashore, and began to prepare huts for their comrades who were unable to help themselves. They made shelters by digging holes in some sand- hills near a brook, and then covering the pits with canvas from the ship. Others set oat to explore the island on which they had been cast. They found the place to be without trees, and were not able to find any traces of inhabitants. Towards the centre of the island they discovered many foxes, both blue and white, the fur of which was not at all so fine as that of the Siberian fox. Along the shore sea-otters were seen in abundance. The flesh of these creatures was so tough that it could hardly be torn into pieces with the teeth. Steller, the doctor, however, v/as glad to see even this kind of animal food, as he believed it was a cure for 113 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. the scurvy, which was doing so much damage. The intestines of the animals, not being so tough, were kept for the sick. The otters were killed also for the sake of their fur, which the sailors thought they might, later on, use for trading with the Chinese. No fewer than nine hundred of these skins were collected, and, for his services to the sick, Steller received three hundred of them. Thirty of the crew died on the island. Bering himself lived only until the 8th of December. Like the gallant Sir Hugh Willoughby, at the end of the sixteenth century, he had a hard fate. The unfortunate Bering may almost be said to have been buried alive. The sand from the sides of the pit in which he lay kept slipping down and covering his feet. He would not allow it to be removed, as it kept him warm, and, as the slip- ping continued, he gradually became more than half covered with it. After his death, it was necessary to dig him out in order that he might be properly buried. After the beginning of May 1742, forty-five members of the crew who were still alive began to build a vessel from the timbers of the wreck. The carpenters were all dead, but a Cossack named Starodubzoff, who had worked for a time as a shipwright, volunteered to superintend the building if they would proceed with it. CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. 113 For three months they laboured at their task, and, at the end of that time, had the happiness of setting forth in a httle ship, which carried them in safety to Kamchatka. They left their desolate island — Bering's Island it was after- wards called, in memory of the brave sailor who had died there — on the loth of August, and, though kept back by unfavourable wmds, cast anchor in the Bay of St. Peter and St. Paul on the 27th. As a reward for his good service, the Cossack, Starodubzoff, was made a nobleman. While these things had been happening, what had become of Chirikoff ? After his vessel had been separated from that of his commander, he ran for the coast of America, which he reached in latitude 55° 36'. His voyage, though not so unfortunate as that of Bering, was attended with hardly less hardship and trouble than his chiefs. The part of the coast where he touched at in America was steep, rocky, and bare, without a single island where he might find shelter for his ship in case of need. Anchor- ing off the shore, he sent a long-boat to effect a landing wherever it was possible. When several days had passed without the boat making its appearance again, he sent off another, which probably suffered the same O.N. H 114 CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. fate. What happened to them has never been learned. Later on, some canoes manned by natives came out towards the ship, but, as they were afraid to approach too near, Chirikoff was not able to obtain any information from them. At length, giving up hope of ever seeing his men again, he departed from the place, and, steering for Kamchatka, arrived at that country by the beginning of October. Not long after the return of Bering's crew from the desolate island on which they had been cast, the inhabitants of Kamchatka ventured to visit the place. The furs found there were sufficient to cause the Russians to make a series of voyages to the island, and, some of the vessels being driven out of their course, a knowledge of the Aleutian Isles was obtained. These islands were found to be thinly peopled, and worthy of further visits because of the number of furred animals which had their homes there. The Russian government, strangely enough, seems to have paid little attention to this new discovery, and all voyages to the islands were carried on by private persons. It is possible that the government did not receive any definite information about the matter for some time ; though a plain statement was made CAPTAIN VITUS BERING. 115 on the subject in 1750. Not till the year 1760 was anything done to aid the trade that was gradually rising in those regions. In that year, however, the governor of Tobolsk began settlements and factories on the islands, and, before long, the Russians were carrying on a large trade in furs with China. The German doctor who accompanied Bering — Georg Wilhelm Steller — made several re- markable discoveries on the coast of Alaska, and on Bering's Island off the coast of Kamchatka. He sighted the gigantic snow-peak in Southern Alaska of Mt. St. Elias, nearly 18,000 feet high, the outlying member of a group of the highest mountains in North America (Mt. Logan, within British limits, rises to nearly 20,000 feet); and on Bering's Island, near the coast of Kamchatka, he recorded the gigantic Sirenian aquatic beast, the Rhytina. This extraordinary relation of the manati and dugong was twenty-two feet long in the adult male, but having no means of defence or escape, it was soon destroyed by the Russian sailors. VI. — Captain Cooke CHAPTER !. FIRST VOYAGE, James Cook was born in the Yorkshire village of Marton, on the 27th of October, 1728. When thirteen years of age his father ap- prenticed him to a linen draper at the fishing village of Snaith ; but Cook felt no pleasure in this occupation, and found his chief interest in chatting to the sailors who called at the port. The desire for a sea-faring life came upon him and was too strong to be resisted. Gain- ing his father's consent, he left the linen draper's shop, and went to sea as ship's boy in a boat carrying coal from England to Ireland. In 1755 war broke out between France and England, and Cook engaged himself on board the Eagle^ a vessel of sixty tons, under Sir Hugh Palliser. His activity and his know- ledge of the details of his work stood him in good stead, and he was soon noticed by the officers, and recommended by his captain for CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 117 promotion. He was made boatswain, and in 1759 sailed in the Mercury for Canada, where he joined the fleet of Sir Charles Saunders, who, with General Wolfe, conducted the siege of Quebec. Here Cook distinguished himself by drawing up a chart of the St. Lawrence, which was published by the English Admiralty. After this he corrected many errors in the maps of America. In 1769 the transit of Venus across the sun's disc was expected to occur, and it was resolved by the English government to send out an expedition to the Pacific Ocean, where the transit could best be observed. Cook v/as about forty years of age at this time, and, being highly recommended by Sir Hugh Palliser, was placed in charge of the expedition and raised to the rank of ship's lieutenant. This was his first appointment in the Royal Navy. His orders were to observe the transit of Venus, and also to make a voyage of discovery in the Pacific Ocean. While his ship, the Endeavour^ was being equipped with men, stores, and ammunition, Captain Wallis returned to England after his voyage round the world. Being consulted as to the best place to make the observation, he chose the island of Tahiti, which he had discovered in the Pacific Ocean. ii8 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. The Endeavour left Plymouth on the 26th of August, 1768, and arrived at Madeira on the 13th of September, where fresh fruit was obtained, No incident of any importance occurred during the voyage from Madeira to Rio de Janeiro. Having obtained fresh provisions, the Englii^h ship entered the Strait of Le Maire, at the very extremity of South America, on the 14th of January, 1769. Very stormy weather was encountered here, but the Endeavour was soon anchored in the Bay of Good Success. Cook records the miserable hves of the natives of Tierra del Fuego, who could barely exist in that severe climate. On the nth June the explorers arrived at Tahiti, and two days later anchored in Port Matavai. Cook was very careful to give strict instructions to his crew as to their behaviour towards the natives, and they con- tinued on friendly terms during their stay. On the 3rd of June, the observations were taken and the results carefully noted. Some of the officers exploring the interior of the island were surprised to hear the natives singing, the subject of their song being the arrival of the English and the incidents which had happened during their stay. One of their favourite dishes was stewed dog, which Cook, having tasted, declared was very good. CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 119 Just before the ship sailed, a young native, called Tupia, and his servant, a boy of thirteen, came on board and begged to be taken on the voyage. Cook decided to take him, as he knew all about Tahiti and the neighbouring isles, and understood the navigation of these parts. On the first island at which the Endeavour called, the sailors had a friendly recepiion by the natives, and the king, Orea, became very fond of Cook. He showed his favour by changing names with the captain. Cook waited here for some time, and found the manners, language, and productions of this island to be the same as those of Tahiti. To the south-west lay Ulietea, where Cook landed and took possession. Other small islands were discovered, and Cook gave the general name of Society Islands to the entire group. Six days later was found the Island of Oteroa. To remain there was impossible owing to the hostility of the natives, so the explorer sailed to the south. After encountering a severe storm, which forced him to change his course, land was discovered. There was rich vegetation, and tali trees were numerous, while houses and natives could be seen. This land was the most northerly of the islands of New Zealand. The natives were very hostile, and as Cook could make 120 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. no headway towards friendship with them, he left this place, which he called Poverty Bay, because he could get only wood there. All along the shore the natives were very unfriendly, and Cook, not being able to find a suitable harbour, decided to return by the way he had come. A halt was made at the Bay of Tedago, where the natives seemed friendly, and both water and provisions were secured. Leaving Tedago, the Endeavour sailed along the coast towards the north, and anchored off the Island of Mayor. Here the explorers stayed five or six days to observe the transit of Mercury, and Cook took the greatest care to be as friendly as possible with the natives. Sailing along the coast, he passed Cape Maria van Diemen, but had to keep a good distance from the shore, owing to the strong winds and the dangerous nature of the coast. He named the various points they passed, and on i6th January, 1770, saw a huge peak covered with snow, which he called Mount Egmont, after the earl of that name. The coast was more sheltered after this, and the sailors landed in order to refit the ship. The natives were friendly at this place, and the officers made many excursions into the interior. A pah^ or fort, was visited. This vvas a huge stronghold built of solid stone. CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 121 The officers also discovered that the natives were cannibals. They openly admitted that they ate their enemies. Cook soon set sail again, and a month later passed what he believed to be the most southerly point of New Zealand, and called it South Cape. This was really the most southerly point of Stewart Island. Convinced by the great waves which rolled in from the south-west, that no land would be found in that direction, he decided to go round by the eastern coast. Steering northward, he entered a fine, sheltered bay near the southern point of South Island. Cook named it Dusky Bay, and would have waited here some time, but had to hasten in order to get the benefit of a wind which blows only once a month in these latitudes. The appearance of this coast from the sea is wild and savage. Huge mountains with barren rocks, covered in places with snow, rise direcdy from the coast. Farther on, the mountains are in the interior, while hills and fertile valleys border the coast. After going round the island, he regained the entrance to Queen Charlotte^s Sound, where the crew took in wood and water. Although discovered by Tasman in 1642, no later European captain had visited the shores 122 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. of New Zealand. It was even undecided whether it was an island, or part of a continent. Cook settled this point, explored its coasts, and exactly defined its position. The northern island was very barren and mountainous, and had only a small population. The southern island was well wooded, the soil being fertile and well watered. Dogs and rats were the only quadru- peds found on the islands, the former being used for food. The natives were tall and well built, alert, strong, and intelligent. The women were dressed like the men, and could be dis- tinguished only by their voices. While the members of the same tribe were friendly to each other, they hated their enemies and gave them no quarter. There were frequent wars among the tribes, but they all looked on the English as enemies, and it was only when they found it impossible to conquer the white men that they began to be friendly. The New Zealanders w^ere in the habit of tattooing themselves, and they also greased their hair with an oil obtained from fishes or from sea-birds. Cook was surprised to find that the women paid less attention to their appearance than the men, their chief weakness being for ear ornaments, consisting chiefly of feathers, fish CAPTAIN JAMES COOK, 123 bones, bits of wood, and the teeth of their deceased parents. Their usual costume consisted of two parts, one attached to the shoulders and coming to the knees, and the other hanging from the w^aist to the ground. These dresses were sometimes beautifully trimmed with coloured fringes. The people were very industrious, and had built a fine fleet of canoes for purposes of war, the vessels being finely ornamented and able to carry from forty to fifty armed men. From New Zealand, Cook sailed westward, and soon afterwards land was sighted, which proved to be the eastern shore of Australia. It was a mountainous and richly wooded country. The natives were ornamented with white powder, which covered their faces and formed stripes on their bodies. Cook found it impossible to treat with them, as they fled on his approach. From the great number of plants found there, the landing-place (south of Sydney), was called Botany Bay. Trees were very plentiful, and Cook assiH'es us, as large as the oaks of England. Birds abounded, and were remarkable for their beauty, while fish in plenty were found in the Bay. Leaving here the explorers continued to sail to the north, keeping two or three miles off the coast to avoid the strong currents. CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. Landing at Bustard Bay, they found the country inferior to that about Botany Bay. The dry sandy soil produced only a few stunted trees, showing that the great need of the country was a water supply. While on shore, the sailors were badly stung by a prickly shrub, and gnats and mosquitoes also covered them with painful bites. This part of Australia Cook named New South Wales. Continuing the voyage, the explorers had a marvellous escape from wreckage on a reef, and, after much danger, arrived at the mouth of a current which Cook named Endeavour River. Landing here, they found many strange animals and birds, including kangaroos, phalangers, dasyures, kites, hawks, paroquets, and cockatoos. The natives were very friendly, and treated the sailors well. They were blackish-brown, of medium height, and had pleasant features. They painted their bodies a bright red, and wore an ornament in their nose. After leaving Endeavour River, considerable difficulty was found in steering clear of the shoals and avoiding the strong currents. As far as the eye could reach, the sea seemed to dash on line after line of rocks. Once the voyageurs narrowly escaped being wrecked, the Endeavour having struck on a rock, but, getting off, they doubled the most northerly CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 125 point of New Holland. To this place Cook gave the name of Cape York. After passing Prince of Wales Island, Cook sailed for New Guinea, but on landing, three natives attacked the sailors, who had to fire on them in order to regain their ship. The natives were not so dark as the Australians, but, like them, wore their hair short and went without clothes. They carried a hollow stick, from which fire was emitted as though from a gun, but there was no sound. The use and structure of this strange weapon has never been discovered. Cook now determined to push on to Batavia, as the Endeavour was in need of repairs, while many of the crew, including the surgeon, had died of fever. Then, leaving Java, the explorers arrived at Penang, where they obtained victuals. Cook was well treated at the Cape of Good Hope, where he made a short stay, and, after touching at St. Helena, cast anchor in the Downs, on the nth of June, 1772, his voyage having lasted nearly four years. 126 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. CHAPTER II. SECOND VOYAGE. As a reward for his discoveries, Captain Cook was made commander in the Royal Navy on 29th August, 1772. Some people still believed that an Antarctic Continent existed, and, when an expedition for its discovery was planned, Cook was chosen as its leader. Two vessels, the Resolution and the Adventure j were built and carefully stocked with provisions to last for two and a half years. Some of the crew had already served under Cook in the Endeavour. Captain Tobias Furneaux received command of the Adventure. Sailing from Plymouth in 1773, Cook reached Funchal in Madeira, and, after getting fresh provisions, continued his voyage, calling at the Cape Verde Islands for a supply of water. He was so careful of the good health of his crew, that, on arriving at the Cape of Good Hope, there was not a single case of sickness on board his ship. Leaving here, both vessels sailed in search of Cape Circumcision. The weather soon became much colder, and all the animals embarked at the Cape died. The sailors also suffered from CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 127 the damp. Rain and snow and fog succeeded each other, and huge icebergs added to the dangers of navigation. The cold grew more intense, and scurvy broke out among the men. Cook, having decided that no land was to be found in this direction, at the end of December determined to sail eastward. Fierce storms raged, and the ships were in danger of being hemmed in by the icebergs. The Adventure now went amissing, and, after fruitless search, the Resolution had to continue her voyage alone. Finding it impossible to pass the Arctic Circle, owing to the ice blocks, Cook resumed his course to the north, and soon reached New Zealand. A suitable anchorage having been found in Dusky Bay, the health of the crew was much improved by the supplies of fowl, fish, and vegetables, which the country furnished. To please the natives Cook gave a concert. The fife and cornet were played to them in vain, but they loved to hear the drum. One day a chief and his daughter came on board, and inspected every part of the ship. To show his respect for Cook, the chief wished to anoint him with tainted oil. Cook managed to escape his kindness, but one of the officers had to submit to it, to the amusement of the entire crew. Then the chief departed, taking with him 128 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. nine hatchets and thirty pairs of scissors, which he had received as presents. Before leaving Dusky Bay, Cook had a space of land cleared, where he planted kitchen-garden seeds. He also left five geese behind. We thus see how he worked for the welfare of the natives, and also for future navigators. Sailing for Queen Charlotte's Sound, where he expected to meet Captain Furneaux, he found that captain had been there for six weeks. During this time he had landed and planted a garden, besides making friends with the natives, who, he found, were cannibals. Cook landed here and left some domestic animals, and, in addition, planted potatoes. The natives were like those of Dusky Bay, but not so mannerly. Among them were several women, whose lips were covered with little holes, the edges of which were painted a bluish black, while their cheeks were coloured a bright red, by a mixture of chalk and oil. Cook did not recognise a single native whom he had met on his first voyage. The number of inhabitants was reduced to a third. The pah was deserted, as were many of the cabins along the coast. The two ships being repaired, Cook set off to find Pitcairn Island, but, owing to scurvy on board the Adventure^ had to shorten his cruise. CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 129 Having now no hope of reaching an Antarctic Continent, he sailed for the north-west, and soon saw several islands. These were mostly of circular shape, the lower parts level with the sea, and they contained a basin of sea water in the centre. Most of them were inhabited, although they were small and produced little else but cocoa-nuts. After being driven on a reef and nearly wrecked the ships anchored at Otaiti Piha in the Society Islands, and were soon surrounded by visitors, who exchanged all kinds of fruit for glass beads. Several natives asked for news of Cook's former officers. They were artful thieves, and when on board the ships had to be carefully watched. The officers made many journeys into the interior. During one of these excursions a man was seen with very long nails. He was im- mensely proud of them, as they showed that he did not need to work. A single finger was used for scratching purposes I The same day they saw a man who passed his time in being fed by his wives while he lay on a carpet of thick shrubs. On the 22nd of August, Cook and some of his officers visited King Waheatua. He received them kindly, made Cook sit on his stool, and asked for various Englishmen he O.N. I r30 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. had known on the former voyage. After pay- ing the usual compliments, Cook presented the king with a shirt, a hatchet, some nails, and a tuft of red feathers mounted on wire. This last gift excited great admiration from the king and his followers. Waheatua was a fine-looking man, tall and well made, but his appearance was spoiled by the look of fear and distrust which he con- stantly wore. He was surrounded by chiefs and nobles who were remarkable for their height, and one of them, Etee, his chief friend, was enormously stout. The king was much amused by Cook's watch, and on its use being explained to him called it the little sun. In Matavai Bay a crowd of Tahitians came on board the ships. Cook had tents erected on shore for his sick, the sail-menders, and the coopers, and then went with three officers to Oparri to visit king Ota. Cook gave many presents to him and to his followers, as he much wanted to obtain this man's friendship. The native w^omen loaded the visitors with such large pieces of their finest stuffs, brightly coloured and highly perfumed, that they could hardly walk. Otu returned the visit next day. He refused to eat anything, but his suite did not follow his example. The king was pleased to accept a small spaniel CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 131 and a pair of goats, and then went away in his sloop. Leaving Matavai, the explorers took with them a young Tahitian named Parko, who cried bitterly when they lost sight of land, but the officers promised to be like fathers to him, and he was comforted. The ships next called at Huaheine Island, a smaller island than Tahiti. Here the sailors obtained fowls, pigs, and fruit, the natives gladly exchanging these products for hatchets, nails, and glassware. Cook paid a visit to his old friend. King Orea, who shed tears of joy at sight of him. The king was very kind, and introduced his friends, to whom Cook gave presents. He also supplied the visitors with all they needed during their stay. The natives, however, quarrelled with the sailors, and Spurrman, the botanist, nearly lost his life. Cook complained to Orea, who, miserable and furious at the incident, promised to find the offenders and punish them. Just as the vessels were leaving, Orea came on board and told Cook the culprits had been found. He wished him to remain and see them punished, but as this was impossible, he went a little way with Cook, and then left him with friendly farewells. The next island visited was Ulietea, where the 132 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. natives made the sailors welcome. King Oreo made inquiries for the English he had known on Cook's former voyage, and also provided him with all the products of his islands. During their stay here, Parko landed with a Tahitian girl who had enchanted him, and refused to return on board the Resolution. A youth named Oedidi, who wished to go to England, gladly took his place. On 17th September the ships, well stocked with pigs, fowls, and fruit, left the Society Islands and steered for the west. Passing the Hervey Islands, they anchored at Eod or Middlebourg Island, where the natives gave them a hearty welcome. A chief named Taione came on board, touched Cook's nose with a pinch of pepper, and sat down without speaking. He received a few trifles, and in return became their friend and guide. The natives were very liberal, and pressed their stuffs and mats upon the English, often declining to accept their iron nails in return. Taione led them to his hut, and gave them a liquor to drink. It was made by chewing a root, a species of pepper, then putting it into a vase and pouring water over it. When ready for use the liquor was poured into leaves shaped like cups. Cook tasted this drink, but the officers did not care to do so, and it was left to CAPTAIN JAMES COOK, 133 the natives, who soon emptied the vase. There were several well cultivated gardens oh this island, and the natives were more civilised than those of Tahiti. Neither pigs nor fowls could be procured, so Cook set sail for the Island of Amsterdam, and the vessels anchored some distance off the shore to avoid the breakers. The natives were friendly, and brought food, mats, arms, ornaments, and afterwards pigs and fowls. A native, called Atago, guided Cook over the island. During the excursion, the captain was shown a person to whom the natives paid the greatest respect. He paid no attention to the visitor's compliments, nor even looked at the presents he gave him. He sat surrounded by adoring natives, and neither moved nor spoke, and Cook was forced to conclude that he was an idiot whom they adored from superstitious motives. The natives of this group — the Friendly or Tonga Islands — were light coloured and well built, and had good features. Their hair was black, but they tinted it with powder, so that red, white, and blue hair was often seen. They also tatued their bodies. Their dress consisted of cloth rolled round the waist and hanging down to the knees. The women also wore aprons of coco- nut fibre, which they ornamented with shells and 134 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. feathers. They had a curious custom of putting everything that was given them on their heads. When their friends died, they slashed their limbs and their fingers to show their sorrow. Their houses were not collected in villages, but were separate and dispersed among the plantations. Tonga and Eoa were specially rich in cocoa-nuts, palms, bread-fruit, yams, and sugar canes. Pigs and fowls were plenti- ful, and the most delicate fish were caught on the coasts. The vessels next sailed for Queen Charlotte's Sound in South Island, New Zealand, but before reaching it were caught in a gale, and the Adventure was not seen again tiU they arrived in England. After being repaired, the Resolution left New Zealand, and entered the glacial regions through which she had already sailed. The crew were in good health, but worn by fatigue, and were not able to stand the intense cold. Oedidi was astonished at the white rain," as he called the snow, and still more astonished at the white earth," which was his name for ice. All on board the Resolution were ill from cold and scurvy, and Cook decided that, if land existed, the ice made access to it impos- sible. He therefore steered for the north. On the nth of March, Easter Island was sighted. It was formed of lava, and presented CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 135 a picture of desolation, the only vegetation being some grass and a few scanty bushes. Wonderful monuments were seen on the island, but by whom erected or for what purpose could not be learned. The natives were tattooed, and wore costume stuffs like those of the Society Islands. They were forced to have a protection from the sun, and wore head coverings of grass and feathers. Trading was carried on between the crew and the natives, and some useful articles obtained, but the absence of drinkable water cut short the stay at this place. After leaving Easter Island, the whole of the crew were ill with scurvy or fever, and Cook anchored at Tao Wati, one of the Marquesas Group. The natives were not friendly at first, but soon changed, and bartered eagerly. These islands were fertile and w^ell watered, and the natives were handsome, with yellow-brovm skin and tatued faces. The difficulty of procuring food caused Cook to hasten his departure, and he sailed for Matavai Bay (Tahiti), where he was warmly welcomed. Various old friends visited the ship, and all were anxious to possess red feathers. They even gave in exchange their strange mourning garments, which they had refused to sell during Cook's first voyage. Oedidi was very popular with the natives. Marrying a daughter of the 136 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. Chief of Matavai, he decided to remain at Tahiti. Before their departure, the explorers saw the natives and their canoes gather together for war. There were over three hundred canoes and nearly eight thousand men. This immense array duly impressed the English with the power and wealth of the natives. The next stop was at a steep and rocky island, where the sailors were attacked by the natives. One of the officers was wounded, and Cook had a narrow escape. It was useless to remain here, and, calling it Savage Island, they sailed away. Four days later the Tonga Archipelago was reached. The natives were friendly, and offered bananas and ail kinds of fruit in exchange for nails and old pieces of cloth. Some of the officers made excursions into the interior, and were delighted with the beauty of the scenery. Continuing his voyage, Cook next called at the Archipelago of the Grandes Cyclades, and the natives celebrated his visit by games and dancing. They traded with the crew, showing great honesty in their dealings. Cook called this place Port Sandwich, and, having obtained food and water, sailed to Malikolo in the New Hebrides. The natives here were hideous in appearance. They were small and badly made, bronze in colour, with flat faces. Their coarse black hair CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 137 and bushy beards did not add to their beauty. Theyr wore as ornaments tortoise-shell ear-rings, bracelets made of hogs* teeth, large tortoise-shell rings, and a flat stone which they passed through the cartilage of the nose. They also wore a cord tied tightly across their stomachs. Their weapons were spears and clubs, as well as bows and poisoned arrows. After leaving Port Sandwich, all the crew of the Resolution were seized with sudden sickness, the result of eating fish which had been poisoned. The natives of Kero Mango, the next place visited, appeared friendly, but Cook mistrusted them. As they found they could not lure the English to disembark, they tried to force them. To save his men, Cook was obliged to order a general volley to be fired. It was useless to attempt to land, and, calling the place Cape Traitor, Cook sailed off, soon reaching an island which the natives called Tanna. On reaching the shore, the Resolution was sur- rounded by the natives, who tried to steal every- thing, even to the hinges of the rudder. As the people were unfriendly, the sailors made few excursions into the interior. A large volcano, which sent out torrents of smoke and flame, occupied the centre of the island. The natives would not allow the English to visit this wonder, but it was impossible to learn the reason for 138 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. this reluctance. Extinct volcanoes were seen in every direction, and a hot spring was dis- covered. By degrees the natives grew more friendly, and the sailors found them kind, civil, and good- hearted, when their jealousy was not excited. The land was fertile, and produced bread-fruits, cocoa-nuts, yams, potatoes, nutmegs, and various other fruits and spices, the names of which were unknown. The natives would not part with their pigs, which were plentiful, for anything offered in exchange. Leaving Tanna, Cook next discovered Erroman and Annatom Islands, and coasted round them. Having passed Malikola and Land of the Holy Spirit, he left this Archipelago, naming it New Hebrides. New Caledonia was next discovered. The coast appeared bare and sterile, but Cook, find- ing an opening, landed at Balade. The strangers were made very welcome, and a brisk trade was carried on, nails and red cloth being in great demand. The natives were tall and well made, with curly hair and beards. Their skin was of a dark chocolate colour. Many of them suffered from a kind of leprosy, which caused their arms and legs to be considerably swollen. They wore little clothing, and orna- mented their ears with tortoise-shell or rolled-up CAPTAIN JAMES COOK, 139 leaves of sugar cane. They were very lazy, but honest and polite. The country was rich in minerals, but fruits were rare. The natives lived on fish and roots, and also on the bark of a tree. The population was not large. The houses were shaped like bee- hives, and no outlet but the door was provided for the smoke from the fires, which were always kept burning. The inhabitants buried their dead, and several of the crew visited a chiefs tomb, which was a mound, with darts, javelins, and other weapons stuck all round it. Cook, after much persuasion, got the natives to accept some pigs, and soon after left Balade. South of New Caledonia a small island was discovered, rich in pine trees, and Cook named it Pine Island. At uninhabited Norfolk Island many unknown vegetables were found, and a plentiful supply was taken on board. When the Resolution anchored at Queen Charlotte's Sound, New Zealand, Cook found the gardens, planted on a former occasion, had been neglected, but a few plants had grow^n well. The natives were very reserved, which made Cook anxious as to the fate of the Adventure, He could get no ansv/ers to his questions, so, after landing some pigs, he took his departure. I40 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. After sailing for some time, the shores oi America near the entrance to the Straits oi Magellan were sighted. The coast was extremely wild, with huge rocks and precipices. The mountains in the interior were covered with snow, and not a sign of vegetation was to be seen. The Resolution cast anchor in Christmas Sound, and soon the crew were supplied with birds and a large quantity of eggs, which formed a welcome change in their food. Doubling Cape Horn, Cook crossed the Strait of Le Maire and anchored at Staten Island. Whales and other sea monsters were here in abundance, and two of the officers had a narrow escape when hunting them. Cook now sailed to the south-east to explore the only part of the ocean yet unknown to him, and, discovering land, took possession in the name of George III., in whose honour he called the country Southern Georgia. The aspect of the country was most forbidding. In the interior huge rocks abounded, and the valleys were covered with perpetual snow, with no trace of vegetation anywhere. The discovery of Southern Thule, Saunders Island, Chandeleur Islands, and Sandwich Island, convinced Cook that such barren lands were of no commercial value. Having made certain of their existence, he engaged in a fruitless search CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 141 for Cape Circumcision, and regained the Cape of Good Hope in March 1773. Here he received a letter which was waiting for him from Captain Fumeaux. In it he told Cook that he arrived at Queen Charlotte's Sound, New Zealand, on 13th November, 1773, and took in wood and water, afterwards sending a boat with an officer and ten men to gather edible plants. As they were absent a long while, a search was made for them, and parts of the boat and the clothing of the men were found. It was afterwards discovered there had been a fight, and that the natives had killed and eaten the Englishmen. Furneaux left New Zealand, doubled Cape Horn, touched at the Cape of Good Hope, and on the 14th of July, 1774, reached England. Cook took in fresh provisions, repaired his ship, and started on his homeward journey. On the 29th of July, 1775, he anchored at Plymouth, after an absence of over three years. He had been very successful in the objects for which the voyage had been undertaken, and was rewarded — but, we should nowadays think, inadequately — • for his labours. 142 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. CHAPTER III. THIRD VOYAGE. The question of a northern passage between the Atlantic and the Pacific Oceans was eagerly discussed at this time, and it was resolved to send an expedition to seek an outlet by way of the Pacific, and to report on the usefulness of such a passage for trading purposes. A man of experience, of presence of mind in danger, and having a knowledge of science, was needed as leader, and the command was offered to Captain Cook as one who possessed these qualities. Two ships, the Resolution and the Discovery^ were fully equipped and placed at his disposal, Captain Clerke taking command of the Discovery. Cook's orders were to cross the Pacific, and search to the east for the North- West Passage. At Kamchatka, he was to make a short stay, and then return to England by what he considered the best route for navigation. The Resolution left Plymouth on 7th July, 1776, and was joined at the Cape by the Discovery. Being detained there through repairs needed by the Discovery y Cook laid in stores for a two-years' voyage, and also took on board live stock for Tahiti and New Zealand. Early in the next CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 143 year Tasmania was reached, and Cook cast his anchor in Adventure Bay. Some of the natives came on board. They were of ordinary height, with black skins and woolly black hair, but they had not the thick lips and flat noses of the West African Negroes. Their features were not disagreeable, and they had beautiful eyes ; but they were extremely dirty, and used a yellow ointment for their hair and beards, and some even rubbed their faces with it. They took the presents offered to them, and went away without showing any pleasure. Soon afterwards the vessels arrived at Queen Charlotte's Sound, in New Zealand, but not a native would venture on board, as they felt sure the Enghsh would punish them for the murder of their comrades. When they were convinced that Cook had no such intention, they came and carried on traffic with the crew. Pigs and goats were landed in the hope that they would live and multiply in New Zealand. At an island named Wateroo two of the officers landed alone and unarmed. They were conducted through a crowd of men, armed with clubs, to the presence of three chiefs, whose ears were adorned with red feathers. Several women danced before the chiefs in a very grave manner, and took no notice of the new arrivals. The officers were separated, their 144 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. pockets were emptied, and they became rathei frightened. They were detained till evening, being forced to allow the natives several times to examine the colour of their skin. When night came, they were allowed to go, and were loaded with cocoa-nuts, bananas, and other fruits. Hervey Island was sighted on the 5th April. On Cook*s former voyage it was uninhabited, but now several natives approached the vessels in their pirogues. They were fierce in appear- ance and would not come on board. They were armed with spears and clubs and resented any attempt at landing. Cook now determined to reach the Tonga or Friendly Islands, where he was sure of wood and water and provisions for the crew. The English sailors were well received, and procured pigs, water, fruits, and roots. The natives entertained them to various exhibitions of clubs and boxing. Two women also showed their skill in fighting with each other, and were applauded just like the men. Games and dances went on for days, and Cook gave an exhibition of fire- works, which very much astonished the natives. Pulaho, the king, was short and stout, and looked like a barrel. He was dignified, grave, and intelligent, and examined the vessels, and asked why the English had come. Cook enter- tained him to dinner. He ate and drank very CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 145 little, and asked the captain to land with him. He did so, and a grand feast was prepared in his honour. Cook stayed in these islands for three months, the natives being exceedingly kind, and entertaining him during all that time. At Eoa, Taione gave him a hearty welcome, and from him Cook learned that each chief ruled a number of islands. The principal islands are Vavao and Hamao. The Viti (Fiji) Islands, relatively large in size, were virtually overlooked by Cook. They were inhabited by a race of warriors much more intelligent than those of the Friendly Islands. To show their grief for the illness or death of their friends, the natives of Tonga Island sacrificed the joints of their little fingers, and tore their cheeks with whale's teeth. As a result, nearly every one was disfigured. The curious expression, TahUy plays an important part in the language of this people. When anything is ''tabu," they are not allowed to touch it, and if the king entered a house belong- ing to one of his subjects, it became tabu. The owner forfeited it to the king, and could not live in it again. The religious ideas differed in the various islands, but belief in the immortality of the soul, and the practice of offering human sacri- fices were common to all. After leaving Tonga Islands, and being O.N. K 146 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. tossed about by strong winds, Cook sighted an island named Tabuai. The natives approached in their boats, but could not be persuaded to come on board. The island appeared fertile, and Cook was told that pigs and fowls were plentiful, but, having plenty of provisions on board, he did not stop. The Island of Tahiti next came into view, and both vessels anchored at the Peninsula of Tairabon. In exchange for red feathers, the natives brought fruits, pigs, and fowls, and after being well supplied, Cook sailed for Matavai Bay. Here King Otu came to see his old friend. Cook found that human sacrifices were common in Tahiti. In the king^s presence, a man of the lowest rank was killed by blows from clubs, and his hair and one eye were placed as an offering before the king. Next day a great slaughter of pigs was to take place. This ceremony was performed to procure the help of one of the gods in an expedition against a neighbouring island. Cook presented the animals — geese, ducks, turkeys, cattle, horses, sheep, and goats — he had brought from Europe to Otu, who had built a pirogue for the King ot England, but it was too large to be taken on board. The dusky ruler was disappointed at this, CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. and was at a loss how to thank Cook for the animals. In January, 1778, the Sandwich or Hawaiian Archipelago was discovered far to the north. Both vessels were soon surrounded by the pirogues of the natives, who spoke one of the Polynesian languages. Next day many of them came on board, and showed their delight and astonishment at so many unknown objects. The sailors soon found that they were expert thieves, and had to watch them constantly. As soon as the ships had anchored in Ouai Mea Bay, Cook went on shore. When he reached land, the natives who were waiting in a crowd, placed themselves at his feet, and gave him a most respectful welcome. A party of them helped the crew to carry the casks of water on board, and fruits, pigs, fowls, and provisions in abundance were brought by them. The natives were of medium height, strong and vigorous. They were intelligent, clever, and industrious, and showed much taste for agriculture, while they were frank and loyal in disposition. In their style of dress and general habits they were like the Tahitians, and the custom of Tabu was very carefully practised. The population was fairly large all over the island. Cook now set his course eastward in order 148 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. to reach America, and soon sighted the coast of New Albion. Keeping at a distance, Cape Blanc was passed, and shortly after, the latitude of Juan de Fuca was reached, but Cook failed to discover this strait. A bay was found, however, where the ships obtained water, and the crews got some rest. Cook called it Hope Bay, and had no sooner anchored than three boats approached the vessels. The natives made long speeches one after the other, and seemed eager for the English to land. They were friendly, but would not go on board. While the Resolution was being repaired, the Amerindians began to trade. They offered skins of animals, including bears, wolves, wolverines, foxes, weasels, and otters in great quantities. Clothes made of hemp, bags full of red ochre, stuff made of hair or wool, bows, lances, fishhooks, bits of sculptured wood, and ornaments made of iron and copper shaped like a horse-shoe, which were worn hung from the nose, were all used for barter. The natives had their faces painted, and wore feathers fixed on their heads. They were intelligent, but cunning thieves, and possibly cannibals. After obtaining oil and a fish like sardines, and having his repairs completed, Cook continued his voyage. He named this CAPTAIN JAMES COOK 149 place King George's Sound, but the native name was Nootka. The ships had scarcely gained the open sea when a fearful storm overtook them, and the Resolution sprang a leak. Cook was anxious to find the Strait of Admiral de Fonte, but being carried past the supposed spot by the storm, he was forced to continue his voyage along the American coast. He came much into contact with the natives, and noticed that the canoes had been replaced by boats — only the framework being wood- — with seal- skin spread over. Reaching Prince William Sound, on the coast of Alaska, the leak of the Resolution was repaired. In succession the navigator saw and named Elizabeth and Saint Hermogene Capes, Bank's Point, Capes Douglas and Bede, St. Augustine's Mount, the River Cook, Trinity Island, and the group called Schumagin. Next were passed Bristol Bay, Round Island, Calm Point, Newenham Cape, and Anderson Island, so called because the naturalist of that name died there of chest disease. After passing King Island and Prince of Wales Cape, the most westerly point of North America, Cook sailed along the Asiatic coast. At last he entered Bering Strait, and the following week came into contact with the ice. CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. He found it impossible to survey because of the icebergs, and though for a whole month he tried to find an outlet, it was useless. The sailors noticed that the icebergs were clear and transparent, only the upper parts being slightly porous. This caused Cook to believe that they were formed in the open sea, as no produce of the earth was visible on them. After repeated efforts to go farther north, he was forced to seek winter quarters in a warmer latitude, meaning to continue his search the following summer. He came back as far as the Sandwich Islands, with the intention of completing his survey of them during his stay, Maui Island, one of the Sandwich group, being discovered on the 26th November. The natives offered fruits, roots, potatoes, and bread-fruits, in exchange for nails and iron goods. Shortly afterwards, Hawaii was seen with its highest mountains tipped with snow, and the two vessels anchored in Karakakua Bay. The greatest excitement prevailed among the natives. The shore was covered by a curious multitude, while pirogues surrounded both vessels, Vvliich were crowded with visitors. Several chiefs came on board, among them one named Paria. He had considerable authority over the common people, and some CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. timely presents secured his services for the English. Cook had formerly found the natives fairly honest, but on this occasion they proved to be sad thieves. It was discovered that they were being encouraged by their chiefs, as several of the stolen articles were found in their possession. Koa, a very thin old man, was brought on board by Paria and another chief named Kanina and presented to Cook. He put a red mantle on Cook's shoulders, and, after he had delivered a long speech, gave him a little pig. Never had so much homage been paid to Cook, and the English were greatly astonished, but they did not understand the reason till a later date. There was a tradition among the natives that a man named Rono, who lived under the ancient kings of Hawaii, had killed his wife., whom he loved, in a fit of jealousy. His grief drove him mad, and he went about quarrelling with and striking everybody. Worn out, he at last sailed off, promising to return one day, on a floating island, bringing coconuts, pigs, and dogs. Year by year they watched for Rono, and he became one of their gods, and the suhiect of their national song. Tiie high priest, Koa, and his son, declared that Cook wa,s the Ruau CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. whom they looked for, and from that moment he was almost a god to the entire population. The priests made long speeches and addressed prayers to him, while the natives prostrated themselves when he approached. He had to submit to many curious ceremonies, and was always conducted back to his boat by four men who repeated long speeches, while the natives knelt around. Each time he landed, a priest walked in front of him announcing that Rono had landed, and ordering the people to prostrate themselves. Meanwhile the kariSy or warriors, annoyed the sailors by encouraging the natives to steal their goods. The king and his chiefs had a serious talk with Cook, and were very anxious to find out when he meant to leave. The seamen learned that the Hawaiians believed the English had come from a country where there was a famine, and had called at Hawaii to procure food. The worn and haggard looks of some of the crew, and the large quantities of provisions shipped, had led to this belief. Before the English left, the king invited Cook and Clerke to go with him to his residence. An immense load of yellow and red feathers, parcels of stuff, all kinds of vegetables, and a herd of pigs were given to the king from his subjects. This present he divided into three CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 153 oarts, keeping one, and giving the others to the two captains. Soon after this both vessels de- parted, but the Resolution was forced to return for repairs in a few days. It was then seen that the natives were unfriendly. Several chiefs prevented them from helping the sailors to fill the casks with water. They began to throw stones, and Cook was forced to give orders to fire upon them if they persisted. The boat of the Discovery was stolen, and Cook determined to keep the king or one of the chiefs till the boat and other stolen articles were restored. Landing with some marines, he made his way to the king's house. The natives paid him great respect, and soon he met the king and his two sons, who were willing to go on board Cook's pinnace. One of the king's wives begged him not to go, and two chiefs also interfered. The natives surrounded the king and the captain. Cook was in a hurry to embark, and the king would have accompanied him quietly, but he was kept back by force. Cook walked along the shore to regain his boat as quickly as possible, but, a rumour spreading that one of the principal chiefs had been killed, the natives rose against the English, Cook being struck by several of them. He shot the nearest native and killed him, 154 CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. but immediately was surrounded, and by force of numbers knocked down. The natives raised shouts of joy when they saw him fall, and, after dragging his body along the shore, they attacked him one after the other until he no longer lived. The English sailors tried, but in vain, to recover his body, though two priests gave them part of it later on. The sight made them more anxious for re- venge. The natives continued to attack them when they landed for water, and, to punish them, Clerke — who had taken Cook's place — set fire to the abodes of the priests, and killed many natives who opposed him. At length the islanders gave over the head and hands of Cook to his men, who paid him the last honours with sad hearts. Next day traffic was resumed, and continued during their stay, almost as though nothing had happened. Captain Clerke completed the survey of the islands, sailed north to Kamchatka, and through Bering Strait till stopped by icebergs. He died of lung trouble, and Captain Gore took command. He touched again at Kam- chatka, at Canton, and at the Cape of Good Hope. Anchor was cast in the Thames on the 1st October, 1780, after more than four years' absence. All England mourned the death of Captain CAPTAIN JAMES COOK. 155 Cook. The Royal Society of London struck a medal in his honour, and the king granted a pension to his widow and three sons. Cook was the greatest of England's navigators. His knowledge, the boldness of his undertakings, and his great perseverance, not forgetting his kind treatment of his crews, mark him out as one of the most distinguished of men. VI 1. — Francois de Galaup de La Perouse, CHAPTER L THE VOYAGE OF LA P^ROUSE BEGINS We have seen how, in the time of Captain Cook, European nations, and particularly Great Britain and France, were doing their best to obtain colonies. The full value of such settlements had not been realised, but each country thought that the more of these foreign lands it held, the more powerful it would become. It was being learned, too, that possessions like these were first-rate stations for carrying on trade, and this helped on geographical discovery to an extent which otherwise would not have been possible. Great Britain had taken the lead by means of the discoveries made by Captain Cook, but France did not like to be left behind in the race, and, in 1785, a squadron of ships was formed for the purpose of completing the work which Cook had begun. The command of the expedition was given to Frangois de Galaup de La Perouse, an officer of great talents, who had already shown much skill in conducting a fleet through the LA PEROUSE. 157 dangers of Hudson Bay, in order to destroy the British settlements during the recent war. It may be noted, too, that, in this affair, he had treated the unlucky colonists with so much kindness that he earned the esteem even of those against whom he was fighting. The directions given to La Perouse with regard to the voyage he was to under- take were certainly full enough, but the work to be done was far too much for one expedition. The aim was to clear up every difficulty, solve every problem, and fill up all the blanks that remained in the charts of the ocean. He was to go round Cape Horn, and, on his way, examine the southern coasts of Sandwich Land and South Georgia, so as to fill in the gaps left by Cook in his survey of these lands. He was then to run to the west, and towards the tropics, in order to fix the exact position of Pitcairn Island. Following upon this, he was to survey the Solomon Islands, and the parts of New Caledonia which Cook had not examined, with extreme care. The Gulf of Carpentaria on the northern part of Australia was the next portion to be surveyed, after which he was to return to the Marquesas to rest. 158 LA PEROUSE. The second voyag"e was to include a most minute examination of the north-western coast of America, in order to discover if there was any connection between the seas on the east and on the west of the American continent. The Aleutian Isles were the next to be considered, and then the ships, having touched at Kamchatka, were to go by way of the Kurile Islands and Japan to Manilla and China. Here they were to remain awhile, in order to prepare for the hardest part of their task — the exploration of the north-eastern coast of Asia, of which geographers in Europe had but little knowledge. When the island of Yezo had been explored, La Perouse was to touch for a second time at Kamchatka, and then return home by way of the Ladrones. the Carolinas, and the Moluccas, making a careful survey of each group, and fixing the position of every coast at which he touched. The work to be done in connection with the first part of this voyage was sufficient, if at all well performed, to give fame to the man who accomplished the task ; to carry out the whole plan was almost be- yond the power of any one person, as the ships were neither so well found nor so well LA PEROUSE. 159 prepared for such a task, as a modern vessel would be. Nevertheless, the preparations were as com* plete as was possible, no expense being spared, and nothing being wanting which science could supply. Two very fine frigates, the Boussole and the Astrolabe^ were chosen, and several famous men of science went out with the expedition, in order that as much know- ledge as possible might be obtained from the voyage. The fine manner in which the vessels were equipped, and the ability of those in command of them, ought to have made success certain, and every one who had anything to do with the voyage was full of hope as to the results that would be obtained. Yet the expedition passed through various misfortunes, and finally ended in a failure as great as it was disappointing. The vessels rounded Cape Horn easily, but the time taken was more than had been expected, although the weather was very favourable. Indeed, the voyage had been so tiresome that La Perouse thought it unwMse to set off at once across the Pacific, and he therefore steered for Easter Island, of the inhabitants of which the French naturalists were able to form a much better i6o LA PEROUSE. idea than had been the case with Captain Cook. The ground was well tilled, and the islanders, though quite as intelligent as they were said to be, seemed to the French neither so wretched nor so few in numbers as had been reported. They lived in villages, and, in some cases, the whole of the inhabitants of the village dwelt under one roof. The large houses thus occupied were about three hundred feet in length, and of the same shape as an inverted canoe. From Easter Island the French proceeded to the Sandwich Islands, in order to obtain a fresh stock of provisions. Nothing of importance happened while they were there, nor were they able to find out anything more about these islands than had already been done by English sailors. The hard part of the work undertaken by La Perouse now commenced. He set out to examine the north-west coast of America, which he reached about latitude 59° in June, 1786. He had only two or three months in which to examine this coast, as he was bound, by his orders, to begin the exploration of the north-east coast of Asia in the following spring. The point of the American coast at which he LA PEROUSE. touched was close to Mount St. Elias, where Cook had been before him. The English sailor had examined the whole coast in a northern direction very carefully indeed, and La Perouse thought he would be better employed in ex- ploring the coast towards the south, where he might find out something new, than in going over again the work already done so splendidly by Cook, Soon after the French ships approached to the shore, a harbour with a narrow entrance was discovered. At first the sailors were afraid to attempt a passage, but the water appeared so calm that at length they decided to take the risk. They found a safe anchorage within the bay, though the ships were almost cast away in making the passage. Within this land-locked harbour an extra- ordinary sight met their eyes. All round rose mountains of enormous size, rough and broken, snow-covered, their sharp peaks towering up till lost in the clouds. Not a blade of grass was present to break the bare, gloomy appearance of the jagged rocks. No wind ruffled the surface of the water. A dull silence reigned around, broken only by the occasional fall of huge masses of ice from one or other of five mighty glaciers, which come to an end at this spot. O.N. L l62 LA PEROUSE. The French bought a small island from the natives, and on it built an observatory. They thought this spot was a fine one from which to trade with the natives. It was far enough from the settlements of the Russians, English, and Spaniards to prevent any com- plaints of poaching*' on the part of those nations. So far all had been going on as well as could be ; there was not a single sick man on board the vessels, and it seemed as if success were about to attend every effort made by the members of the expedition, when the first of their misfortunes fell upon them. Three boats were sent to explore the entrance to the harbour, the officer in charge being warned to be very careful. The task committed to him was a difficult one, the force of the tides being very strong at the entrance. The officer, however, did not pay the attention he should have done to the orders he had received, and, running into useless danger, lost two of his boats, the third escaping only with extreme difficulty. Twenty-one persons were drowned in this accident. Soon afterwards the ships proceeded to the Spanish-Mexican settlement at Monterey, which LA PEROUSE. i53 they reached about the middle of September. There the vessels were repaired, and the ex- plorers, without making any discoveries of much importance, crossed the Pacific Ocean in safety, fixing, as they did so, the positions of the Ladrones and the Bashi Islands. They came to anchor at Macao at the beginning of February, 1787. CHAPTER II. SECOND PART OF THE VOYAGE. As soon as he had made preparations for his second year's w^ork, La Perouse sailed to Manilla, leaving that place at the beginning of April in order to explore the north-east coast of Asia. On his way he sailed along the coasts of Japan and Korea. By the middle of June he arrived at the shores of Amurland, and ran along the coast for some distance without seeing signs of any people. On going ashore the explorers were much astonished to find a country which seemed fertile and was yet without inhabitants. The vegetation appeared to be something like that of France, but was much stronger in growth. The mountains were covered v/ith pine trees on the 164 LA PEROUSE. upper parts, and, lower down, with oaks. The borders of the rivers and brooks were over- hung with maple and birch trees, while many natural orchards of apples and nuts were seen on the more level parts of the land. The attempts made by the French to explore this wonderful land had to be abandoned, as the height of the grass was too great to allow them to make satisfactory progress, and, in addition, some large snakes were seen, the sight of these creatures being enough to scare the explorers away. Setting sail again, the explorers ran to the east, and, before long, came to the island of Sakhalien. Here they had the good fortune to meet with some of the natives, who seemed kindly-disposed people. They gave their visitors a good deal of information as to the country in which they lived. One of them, being asked by signs to draw a map of the countries with which he was acquainted, began by marking on the west a line to represent the sea-coast of Amurland or the land of the Manchus. Continuing his drawing, he gave the French explorers such information that La Perouse was able from it to make the passage of the strait which later bore his name — La Perouse Strait. The discoveries made by La Perouse were LA PEROUSE. of the utmost importance. The island of SakhaHen is a large one (24,560 square miles in area), but so little was known about it at the time, even by the Russians, who claimed to have a special knowledge of these waters, that some people ventured to deny its existence altogether. Yezo, too, about which various fables had gathered, now began to appear as a reality. When La Perouse came to Kamchatka, he received from the natives a very kind welcome. Here he had his ships refitted, and obtained permission from the governor to allow M. Lesseps, a Frenchman, who had gone with the expedition as Russian interpreter, to pass to Europe overland. By him were sent full accounts of the voyages made by the expedi- tion, as far as it had gone. Lesseps reached Europe, and was able to convey much informa- tion to the western continent, regarding lands as yet but little known. He was the first to travel completely across the old world ; and he was the uncle of the great de Lesseps, who cut the Suez Canal. Having again put to sea, La P6rouse crossed the line for the third time, and arrived at the Navigators' Islands (Samoa). The natives of these parts were strong, handsome men of unusual height. The smaller size of the Frenchmen led the i66 LA PEROUbE. natives to look down on them as a race ol little people. In dealing with these tribes the French were always most forbearing and cautious, and, by means of their tactful manner, succeeded in obtaining a stock of fresh provisions and water. La Perouse, whose mind does not appear to have been easy with regard to the intentions of the natives, was anxious to get away from the place. The captain of the Astrolabe having discovered, as he thought, a safe harbour, into which a stream of fresh water ran, made up his mind that he would lay in a further supply, and boats from both the ships with sixty-three well-armed sailors set off to obtain it. The harbour, however, proved to be dangerous on account of the number of coral rocks lying at its mouth. It was, besides, so shallow that the boats were able only with much difficulty to get near the beach. Despite these difficulties, the sailors began to fill their casks. Meanwhile, however, the natives had begun to gather on the shore, and their appearance was distinctly hostile. At first they gave some assistance in the work, but, as their numbers grew, they became insolent, and made an ugly rush at the sailors. The men retreated to LA PEROUSE. 167 the small boats, which alone were able to approach the shore, and, in this position, they were not able to use their firearms with effect. The natives now threw hug'e stones at the boats, which were soon destroyed. All the sailors who did not swim to the cutters which lay at some distance off were cruelly murdered. The men were very anxious that La Perouse should take revenge for this attack, but, fear- ing that worse might come of it, he refused, and sailed from the spot. This second misfortune, sudden as it was, threw a gloom over the company, and tended to make the Frenchmen much more cautious in dealing with native races. It may also have caused La Perouse not to touch at the Friendly Islands (Tonga). Continuing on his way he arrived at Norfolk Island, where his naturalists were not able to effect a landing. From Norfolk Island he sailed to Botany Bay, where his sailors were well pleased to see some British men-of-war. These ships were there for the purpose of establishing a new colony, and from both settlers and sailors La Perouse received the greatest kindness. When the British ships set sail for home. La Perouse sent by them the remainder of the papers relating to his voyage. In the spring LA PEROUSE. of 1787 he sailed from Botany Bay, and that was the last heard of him for nearly forty years. La Perouse was a thorough admirer of Captain Cook, and, like him, did everything in his power to keep his men in good health. There was but little sickness on board the French ships, and the two fatal accidents, at the Navigator's Islands and on the American coast, were due, not to any defect in the arrangements made by La Perouse, but to the impulsiveness of those with whom he had to deal. That part of the coast of America which Cook had not been able to survey, namely the north- west, was examined by La Perouse ; and his survey, when joined with those of the Spaniards and the English, completely outlined the coast of that continent. His discoveries on the coast of Tartary were even more important, and, when the difficulties with which he had to contend are taken into account, place him in the front rank of those who have done good work in extending our knowledge of the earth on which we live. LA PEROUSE. CHAPTER III. SEARCHING FOR LA PEROUSE. When two years had passed beyond the date fixed for the return of La Perouse, the French set expeditions on foot for the purpose of search- ing for the lost mariner, and asked the other nations of Europe to help them by keeping a good look-out in the South Seas, In particular, two ships were equipped by the King of France and sent to look for the missing expedition. The command of the search party was given to Admiral d'Entrecasteaux. From information received by the admiral, it was thought possible that the unfortunate sailors had been cast away among the Admiralty Isles, but, on proceeding there, he found nothing to justify the belief that La Perouse had been wrecked in that district. Now, before leaving Botany Bay, La Perouse wrote a letter stating the route he m^nt to follow in the voyage he was on the point of undertaking. The admiral thought he could not do better than start from Botany Bay and trace out the route that the explorer had actually followed. By that means he would be more likely to discover what had become of his lost countryman. 170 LA PEROUSE. The French admiral, however, found no traces of the expedition, although he examined as many natives as he could reach. He therefore resolved to return home. On his way he saw an island, which, by some strange mis- chance, he had not examined as closely as was his custom. Soon afterwards he died, as did the officer who w^as second in command. Then the crews began to suffer from illness, and so severe was the sickness that, before the expedi- tion arrived at Java, about a third of the men had been carried off. When they came to that port, the ships were seized by the Dutch as prizes of war, and it was then the officers learned for the first time of the Revolution which had taken place in France. Thus the expedition of d'Entrecasteaux was only a little less unfortunate than that of which it went in search, while the disturbed state of France prevented any further attempts being made just then to find out what had happened to the missing explorers. In September, 1813, an English vessel, the Hunter y touched at the Fiji Islands in order to procure a cargo of sandal-wood. At the time of which we are speaking, the Fiji Islands (Viti) were not nearly so civilised at they are at the present day. The Europeans who traded with the natives w^ere, as a rule, men of the very LA PEROUSE. roughest class, who not seldom aided the tribes in their battles with one another. Many of them lived among the natives and adopted their customs. While the Hunter lay in harbour taking in her cargo, a massacre took place on shore, nearly all the white men who were living there being killed. One of them, however, Martin Bushart by name, took refuge on board the Hunter^ and begged to be put on shore at the first suitable island they saw. One of the officers of the Hunter^ a man called Dillon, had a narrow escape from the Fiji Islanders at the time when the massacre occurred. Bushart and two companions were left in the Queen Charlotte Islands, where they were kindly treated by the natives. In the summer of 1826, Dillon, now a captain, was again in these waters, and, being curious to know what had happened to his companions who had been left behind, determined to go ashore. As he approached, Bushart came in a canoe to meet him. From him Dillon learned that in the island he had found axes, knives, tea-cups, iron bolts, and some other things, all of French manu- facture. He also said that no ship had called at the island before the Hunter^ and that all these things had been brought from the island 172 LA PEROUSE. of Manikolo, which was two days' sail to the westward. The natives, he continued, had told him that many years ago two ships had been wrecked on the shores of Manikolo. The crew of one of the vessels had been killed, but the sailors in the other ship escaped. For some time the shipwrecked sailors re- mained on the island, and then, having built a boat, went away. Two of these Europeans were said to have remained behind on Manikolo, and Bushart, tired of living among savages, said he was willing to aid in the search for them, if Dillon cared to enter upon it. Now, this island of Manikolo was no other than that which had not been closely explored by Admiral d'Entrecasteaux. When Dillon came near to it the wind died down, pro- visions began to run short, and the delay was doing harm to the trade he ought to have been carrying on. He therefore left the search for the present, but, on his arrival in India, let the authorities know what he had learned. In the end, he was given command of a vessel, and sent to see whether he could dis- cover what had actually happened to the unfortunate La Perouse. From conversations with the natives, he learned that they had not killed the crew of one of the ships, but they LA PEROUSE. 173 hardly denied that they were hostile to the survivors while they were on the island. The islanders were fierce by nature, and their want of knowledge regarding the customs and habits of the French made them look upon the white men as spirits. They im- agined that the Frenchmen were talking with the sun and stars, when they saw the telescope being used, while the cocked hats of the foreigners made the natives believe that the noses of the white men were a yard long. Captain Dillon did his best to gather as many as possible of the relics of the ill-fated expedition, and among them he obtained a ship's bell with the inscription Bazin fn*a faitj that is, Bazin made me. In 1828 Dillon arrived in Paris with all the relics he had been able to collect, and was rewarded with a pension of 4000 francs. VI 11 . — Captain George Vancouver. CHAPTER I. TME BEGINNING OF THE FUR TRADE. All who took any interest in geographical discovery felt greatly excited when the news of the wonderful voyages made by Captain Cook came to be known. The new lands of which he told the world would, it was ex- pected, be of vast use for trading purposes, and the excitement was further increased, when people began to understand what a fine trade in furs was lying ready to be developed between China and the north-west coasts of America. We have already seen that the Russians had been quietly working in that direction for a long time past. It was only of recent years, however, they had endeavoured to obtain their furs from America. When they first began to trade, they had been content to obtain the furs from Siberia ; but the large number of fur-bearing animals found in that part of North America with CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. which they were acquainted caused them to turn their attention to the eastern side of Behring Strait, in the hope that, by so doing, they would be repaid for their trouble by the increased number of skins which would come into their hands. What they expected came to pass. Vast numbers of skins were cured, and, hav- ing been sent from the Fox Islands where they were obtained, were passed on to Kamchatka, and, after going through many hands, arrived in China, where they were sold at big prices. The Spaniards, who also had settlements near enough at hand to make this trade pay, were too inactive to trouble about the matter. The Russians had too little ex- perience in trading to understand just what ought to be done, and, therefore, it remained for the English to come half way round the world and pick up the valuable trade lying ready to their hands. They saw, as neither the Spaniards nor the Russians did, that the proper w^ay to hold the fur trade was to take the skins straight from America to China, without passing them through the hands of so many people. In 1784, the last volume dealing with the voyages of Captain Cook was published. 176 CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. and in it Captain King told of the large profits to be made in the fur trade. Perhaps as a result of this, a ship was sent out from Canton, under the command of Captain Hanna. After crossing the Sea of Japan, he arrived at Nootka Sound, the place thought to be the best mart in which to obtain furs. Going to the north, he found several fine harbours, and, at the end of the year, re- turned to China with a rich cargo of pelts. This was the beginning of the direct fur trade with China, a trade which soon spread very widely. Next year Captain Hanna again set out on a similar errand, and this time procured as tine a cargo as before. The trade thus begun from Canton was carried on for some time from that town, which was well situated for the purpose. In 1786, however, two ships sailed from Bombay for Nootka Sound, and expeditions from Bengal soon followed in their wake. Thus India was now beginning to take part in the trade, and the merchants who were far-seeing enough to send out vessels, quickly reaped the benefit of their enterprise. Of course, everything did not go smoothly. Some ships were wrecked, and many of Captain Geoigo Vancouver. CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. 177 the sailors had to endure great hardships. Captain Meares, in the Nootka^ arriving in Prince William Sound, was obliged to spend the winter there. No less than twenty-three of his men died, but the very fact that white men had spent a winter on shore had a good effect, as it tended to bring the English and the natives into closer contact. Thus each began to know the other better than before, and the result was an increase in the trade done between the two sets of men. Captain Meares had sailed from Macao, so that there were two centres from which the trade was carried on. But, if the English merchants at Macao and in India were the first to engage steadily in the fur trade, they did so merely because their position gave them 2in advantage over any rivals, who might seek to share with them the enormous profits of that trade. Some of the merchants in England were not disposed to lose such an opportunity of gaining wealth, and, to strengthen themselves for the task, they formed, in the year 1785, an associa- tion called '^The King George*s Sound Com- pany." The members of this association arranged matters with the South Sea and East India Companies, 178 CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. At that time, certain companies possessed the sole right of trading in certain goods, or with certain places. That means that the companies were able to prevent any persons from trading in the article of which they had the monopoly, or from sending ships to trade with those countries over the commerce of which they held control. These monopolies were bad things for trade, as, though the company holding the monopoly might not be able to carry on the trade for which it existed, it was, never- theless, able to prevent all other persons from attempting to do so. Then, a monopoly might be granted over some article of common use, such as salt. Since there was no competition, the company holding the monopoly might charge whatever it thought fit, and thus poor people could not satisfy even their most pressing needs, because the price was beyond them. It is only fair to add that the companies generally had to pay the govern- ment a large sum of money for the privilege they obtained. The South Sea Company had the sole right of trade in the South Seas, and the East India Company had control of the trade with India. The new company bought the required privileges from the two companies just mentioned, and, CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. 179 in 1785, sent out two ships to begin the trade. They reached the north-west coast of America in 1786, and then went on to the Sandwich Islands to pass the winter, the captains thinking it better to do this than to risk having the men laid up through exposure to the severity of the North American winter. In the spring of 1787 they returned to the coast of America, and, lest they might interfere with one another in their bargains with the natives, they took different directions. During the course of their traffic, each of the vessels examined carefully the coasts near which they sailed. One of the captains, Dixon by name, visited Nootka Sound at the end of the voyage, and while there met some English ships belonging to his employers. From the sailors he obtained the information that the time for trading was over for that season. As it was useless to remain if no trade could be done, he weighed anchor, and set sail for the Sandwich Islands, where he joined the other vessel, under Captain Portlock. Up till this time the vessels engaged in the fur trade had confined their attention to the places mentioned by Cook, such places, for i8o CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. instance, as Nootka Sound, and Prince William Sound ; but Dixon and Portlock took a much wider view of their commission. Their enter- prise had its reward, as they came upon shores as yet untouched by Europeans, where the natives, unused to the visits of merchants, bartered their furs at a more reasonable price. As a result, their cargoes were richer than ever before. The important point, so far as geography is concerned with these voyages, lies in the fact that the heavy cargoes of furs obtained by the two enter- prising captains was the means of increasing not merely the trade with the north-west of America, but our knowledge of the coast itself. As the fur trade grew in importance, the attention of all nations which possessed a navy was attracted to it. The United States, which had just gained its independ- ence, began to take part in the scramble for the wealth to be derived from the fur trade, and other nations joined in, but, in spite of all, the British ships held their own in the struggle. In the eighteenth century Spain retained but a shadow of its former greatness, yet, indolent though the nation was, it was CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. i8i hardly to be expected that the Spaniards would see the other nations of Europe, even semi -savage Russia, passing them, without making at least some effort to obtain a share of the trade. Accordingly they sent out a good number of expeditions to take part in this newly established venture, and, if possible, to seize some territory on the American coast, which might be of use as a centre to which the natives could come to barter their goods. So much had the Spaniards fallen be- hind in the art of navigation, that, on one of the last voyages undertaken for this purpose, they imagined themselves on the coast of Kamchatka, and were in terror of the Russians, when, as a matter of fact, they were in Prince William Sound. The fruitless attempts of the Spaniards to find their way about a coast which, before long, was navigated each year by small vessels from Europe, are quite sufficient to show how^ far back they now were in the art that had brought them into the forefront of European nations. This was really the fault of the Spaniards themselves, as, in order to keep all the commerce of the New World in their own hands, they had been quite willing that i82 CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. ignorance should prevail as to the exact position on the earth's surface their settlements occupied. Unluckily for them, though their G vn people were indifferent, those of other lands were not, and the result was that rival nations picked up the knowledge Spain was foolish enough to drop. At last the Spaniards, waking up from their indolence, determined to found another empire, in North America this time, by means of which they might have some chance of obtaining a share in the fur trade ; but they were too late in entering the race, and the methods of the sixteenth century were not fitted for the eighteenth. They had the daring to seize Nootka Sound, and expected they would be allowed to retain it. When they did this, Great Britain was on the point of sending out another ex- pedition to that very district. Preparations were at once stopped, and a number of men-of-war placed in commission, for news had been brought that not only had the Spaniards taken possession of Nootka Sound, but they had seized the Argonaut^ an English vessel lying there. The fear of the British Navy had its effect on the Spaniards, and they gave up Nootka Sound CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. 183 as a British possession, and released the A rgonaut. Because of the importance attached to Nootka Sound on account of the fur trade and the fishing carried on within its waters, it was thought necessary to have a formal cession of it. For this purpose, Captain Vancouver, who was to have commanded the expedition that had been stopped through the actions of the Spaniards, was ordered to proceed to Nootka Sound, and see that the Spaniards kept their word. CHAPTER IL Vancouver's voyage. Captain Vancouver sailed in the Dis- covery in 1791, and was accompanied by Captain Broughton, in the Chatham^ a small ship of 135 tons burden. His in- structions were to see that there was no doubt about the cession of the territory the Spaniards had seized, and, having satisfied himself on this point, to survey the whole of the north-west coast lying between 30° and 6i' north latitude. He was to fix his attention on two main (84 CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. objects. It was thought there might be a passage or passages connecting the north- western and the north-eastern coasts of America. This was the first point of which he was to make certain. In the second place, he was to find out how many European settlements were already on the coast. Every inlet, let it be ever so small, he was to examine with care, but was not to trouble about rivers unnavigable for ships large enough to go out to the Pacific Ocean from England. On his return voyage he was to survey the coast of South America, from latitude 44° S. to Cape Horn. It is rather pleasant to record the fact that, though Great Britain was sending out this expedition mainly for the purpose of receiving the cession of Nootka Sound from the Spaniards, Vancouver was instructed that, should he find traders of other nations, and particularly if they were Spaniards, he was to show them every kindness. Not only so, but if he met with any Spanish sailors engaged in surveying the same coasts as himself, he was to render them all the assistance in his power, offer- ing them the full and free use of all his maps, and hiding nothing from them of any discoveries he might have made. CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. 185 On his outward voyage Vancouver sur- veyed much of the coast of Austraha, where he made the discovery of King George the Third Sound. At New Zealand he was successful in completing the surveys of those parts left unfinished by Cook. After being separated from the Chatham by a gale, and making some minor dis- coveries, he rejoined Captain Broughton, who, in the meantime, had discovered Chatham Island. As they approached Nootka Sound they fell in with Captain Gray, who was said to have passed through the Straits of Fuca into an open sea beyond. Gray, however, explained that was not quite true, and Vancouver, entering the strait, sailed up for a considerable distance, and cast anchor farther within it than any seaman had done before him. So far, he had examined two hundred miles of coast so closely that the break- ing of the surf on the shore was never out of sight. With the character of the country he was charmed. Wherever he cast his eyes, trees appeared as if the land had been an English park. Roses grew in abundance among the brushwood. Here and there the country, which appeared to be fertile, opened i86 CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. out into wide-stretching meadows, while, on the mainland, were miles upon miles of forest land, the oak being one of the most common trees. The natives sold a deer to the sailors for a small piece of copper about a foot square, as they thought more of that metal than they did of iron. It was made plain to the Englishmen that these natives were not cannibals, though there must have been some of that class of people near at hand, as, when the sailors made a venison pasty, the natives showed the most marked signs of disgust and horror, and it was not easy to convince them that the white pasty was not the flesh of men. Making his way to the north through this passage, Vancouver met two Spanish ships employed, as he himself was, in making a careful survey of the coast. In accordance with the instructions he haa received on leaving England, Vancouver offered to aid the Spaniards in any way he was able. The Spanish commander thought the best plan would be for the two forces to join, and work together, which they did. The island close to which Nootka Sound is situated is now called Vancouver, but, at CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. 187 first, so well did the two seamen work to- gether that the island was named Vancouver and Quadra Island, after the names of the two commanders. On arriving- at Nootka Sound, some difficulty arose between the Spanish commander and Vancouver as to the terms upon which the district was to be handed over to Great Britain. In consequence of this, Vancouver sent Captain Broughton home to acquaint the government with what had happened. While Broughton was away, Vancouver ex- plored the Columbia River, as far as it was navigable for a small vessel — which was what he had been told to do on leaving England. He found that the natives of the district through which the Columbia ran were like those of Nootka Sound in dress and appearance, but not in language. Some of them were fairly civilised, and their buildings were constructed with taste. Their houses were large, and covered with planks about twenty feet long and two wide, perfectly smooth, the timbers to which they were joined being well fixed together. On the front of these houses was painted a hideous figure of a human face, the mouth being about three feet in height and two in width, the whole face forming the door of the house. i88 CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. At the beginning of 1793 Vancouver went to the Sandwich Islands to pass the winter, returning again to the American coast the next spring. He continued to survey the coast during the rest of the year, and, when winter came again, sailed once more to the Sandwich Islands. Vancouver's presence in these islands was not without its influence. By that time the islanders had become acquainted with three or four European nations. They had also learned that there were others nearly as powerful, and they felt within themselves that it was only a question of time when they should become the subjects of one or other of them. One of their chiefs, Tame-Tame-hah, had a profound reverence for Vancouver, and he proposed that the islanders should become subjects of the nation to which Vancouver belonged. A large gathering of chiefs was held, the proposal of Tame-Tame-hah was accepted, and Hawaii was given up to the King of Great Britain. This happened in the winter of 1794, and, in the spring of the same year, Vancouver once more approached the American coast to finish the survey he had begun. Entering Cook River, he found that it was only an inlet, with no tributary stream to justify tlie name it CAPTAIN VANCOUVER. 189 had received. Cruising to the south, he met a fleet of skin canoes, so frail-looking that he was surprised to see them in those waters. Each of the little vessels held two men, the fleet numbering two hundred vessels in all. The natives were clothed in the skins of birds and beasts of little or no value, their warm fur garments having all been disposed of to Europeans. By the end of August the survey had been completed, and, in October of the following year, the ships were back in the Thames, bad weather having prevented the survey of the western coast of Patagonia. During the four vears that the ships were employed on the voyage, Vancouver surveyed more than nine thousand miles of unknown and dangerous coasts, much of this work having to be done in small boats. That only two men died during the four years is a tribute to the care which Vancouver took of his crew ; but he himself v^as not very fortunate, as the severe exertions he had to make injured his health to such an extent that he never really recovered. The account of his voyage was printed, but before the last volume was issued from the press, Vancouver died. His death, in May 1798, was a serious loss to the country for which he had done so fine a work ; even 190 CAPTAIN VANCOUVER, had he discovered less than he did, he would have been worthy of an honourable place among those who have increased our geographical knowledge : as it is, the excellence of the work he did, and its vast extent, place him by the side of such sailors and discoverers as Drake, Cook, Raleigh, Da Gama, and even Col urn by^ NOTES. PAGB 17. Potatoes. The native home of the potato is not known, but it was pro- bably the mountain regions of North-west South America. Ages before the Spaniards entered the New World the plant had been used by the Peruvians and other nations of the Andes; but Spanish sailors were probably the first to bring it into Europe. It seems to have been brought to Spain about the beginning of the six- teenth century, and to have spread from that country to the Nether- lands and Italy, though it was used first, not as a food but as a curious garden plant. Hawkins was probably the first man to bring the potato into England, after his second voyage in 1564. Sir Francis Drake brought some home in 1586, and Raleigh is said to have cultivated the plant both at Hayes in Devon and Youghal in Ireland. 47. Philip II. was the only son of the Emperor Charles V. and Isabella of Portugal. He was born in 1527 and died in 1598. His life is closely con- nected with English history, as he was the husband of Queen Mary. For fourteen months after the marriage he lived in England, and did his best to win the people to his side, but failed in the attempt. After Mary had died, and Elizabeth was on the throne, he was one of the many suitors for the hand of the Queen. He is further connected with our history, as he was the cause of the despatch of the famous Armada against England. Philip II. was not an admirable person. He was sullen and suspicious by nature, trusting no man, but endeavouring to carry out his plans without help, a.nd using his soldiers, sailors, and statesmen as the mere creatures of his will. 48. Plans in the Nether- lands . Philip was engaged in a long, cruel struggle with the Netherlands, his object being to crush the liberty of the people and make them return to the Catholic faith. Elizabeth, ia a quiet fashion, allowed 192 NOTES. Englishmen to help the Netherlanders in their fight against the power of Spain, and Philip resented this. 60. Ev/aiponoma. Men whose heads were said to grow in their shoulders, their mouths being in their breasts. The belief arose from the peculiar head- dress worn by the natives, and the story was held as true by very many people in England. OtheUo (Act i. sc. iii.) speaks of — *' The Anthropophagi, and men v/hose heads Do grow beneath their shoulders." 69. The Missionaries. The early history of Canada abounds with tales of heroism and daring per- formed by French mission- aries, who went to the newly discovered land in order to convert the Amer- indians to Christianity. 74. A League. The idea of forming a league of all the Amerindians in the district was a good one, and La Salle's success in per- suading the natives to fall in with his plans proves him to have been PAGE well litted for the post he occupied. 86. William the Mosquito. More than one such tale is told of the time of the Buccaneers. T' e classi- cal instance is th story of Alexander Selkii , who was left on Juan nan- dez by Captain Stiadling just as the Mosquito Amer- indian had been, and was rescue'^ by Captain Rogers afte Hving on the island for four years and four m^onths. From this material, Defoe wrote the famous Robinson Crusoe. 91. The Advance to China. Prior to this time the Polos travelled from Venice to China in the 13th century, and, after living there for many years, returned to Europe. 181. Spain and Navigation. Under Philip II. Spain reached the hei '"^t of its power and begu.x to de- cay. Its sailors were to be found on all seas ; during the seventeeth and eighteenth centuries the country lost its greatness, and the sailors had not the daring possessed by those of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. LONDON AND GLASGOW : COLLINS' CLEAR-TYPE PRESS.